Finasteride induced depression: a prospective study

Clinical Pharmacy Laboratory, Drug Applied Research Center, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran.
BMC Clinical Pharmacology (Impact Factor: 1.36). 10/2006; 6:7. DOI: 10.1186/1472-6904-6-7
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Finasteride is a competitive inhibitor of 5 alpha-reductase enzyme, and is used for treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia and androgenetic alopecia. Animal studies have shown that finasteride might induce behavioral changes. Additionally, some cases of finasteride-induced depression have been reported in humans. The purpose of this study was to examine whether depressive symptoms or anxiety might be induced by finasteride administration.
One hundred and twenty eight men with androgenetic alopecia, who were prescribed finasteride (1 mg/day) were enrolled in this study. Information on depressed mood and anxiety was obtained by Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Participants completed BDI and HADS questionnaires before beginning the treatment and also two months after it.
Mean age of the subjects was 25.8(+/- 4.4) years. At baseline, mean BDI and HADS depression scores were 12.11(+/- 7.50) and 4.04(+/- 2.51), respectively. Finasteride treatment increased both BDI (p < 0.001) and HADS depression scores significantly (p = 0.005). HADS anxiety scores were increased, but the difference was not significant (p = 0.061).
This preliminary study suggests that finasteride might induce depressive symptoms; therefore this medication should be prescribed cautiously for patients with high risk of depression. It seems that further studies would be necessary to determine behavioral effects of this medication in higher doses and in more susceptible patients.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background Comparisons of hormones such as dihydrotestosterone (DHT), estradiol (E2), and testosterone indicate their impact on metabolism and body composition. While less is known regarding DHT and E2, testosterone is an androgenic metabolic hormone capable of positively regulating a variety of anabolic and androgenic processes in the body. Accordingly, it has been postulated that the age-related reduction in serum testosterone levels leads to reductions in lean muscle mass, bone mineral density, and other physical conditions that impair physical performance and decrease quality of life. Preliminary studies suggest that key ingredients found in Resettin®/MyTosterone™, a natural supplement containing the carotenoid astaxanthin from Haematococcus pluvialis and Saw Palmetto berry lipid extract from Serenoa repens, could positively impact testosterone levels. To investigate the clinical efficacy of Resettin®, the serum profiles of testosterone, E2 and DHT in healthy sedentary males before and after Resettin® treatment were evaluated in a randomized, placebo controlled clinical trial. Method Twenty healthy, sedentary men between the ages of 21 and 70 were randomized into either an 800 mg/day or 1200 mg/day Resettin®/MyTosterone™ treatment group or lecithin, which was used as the placebo. After a 14-day treatment period, there was a 14-day washout period. After the wash-out period, participants were crossed over within their respective group to either Resettin®/MyTosterone™ or the lecithin placebo for 14 days. Results After 14 days, participants receiving 800 mg per day of Resettin® had significantly reduced baseline-subtracted serum DHT levels in comparison to the placebo control group. While after 14 days, participants receiving 1200 mg per day of Resettin® had significantly reduced baseline-subtracted serum DHT and E2 levels in comparison to the placebo control group. Moreover, participants receiving 1200 mg per day of Resettin® experienced a 38% increase in serum testosterone levels in comparison to the placebo control group, but the effect did not reach statistical significance. Conclusion Although additional studies will be required to evaluate how Resettin® may promote proper testosterone regulation, these findings indicate that Resettin® can favorably influence serum hormone profiles in men.
    Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 08/2014; 11:43. DOI:10.1186/s12970-014-0043-x · 1.50 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Symptoms of depression are common in patients diagnosed with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and are usually a reaction to deterioration of health, severity of lower urinary tract symptoms, and erectile dysfunction. The aim of this observational study was to evaluate the prevalence of depressive symptoms in patients diagnosed with BPH and factors affecting their occurrence in a large Polish cohort. Four thousand thirty-five men (4,035) diagnosed with BPH participated in the survey (age 65 ± 8 years). The occurrence of symptoms of depression was assessed using the Beck depression inventory, severity of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) on the basis of the international prostate symptoms score, and erectile dysfunction using the international index of erectile function (IIEF-5). Depressive symptoms were found in 22.4 % of patients (mild in 20.8 % and moderate/severe in 1.6 %). Erectile dysfunction was found in 71.9 % of patients. Monotherapy for BPH was prescribed to 50.9 % of patients (mostly ARA-selective α1-selective alpha-adrenolytic-47.5 %), while polytherapy (ARA with a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor-5αRI) to 47.9 %. Logistic regression analysis showed a bidirectional relation between the occurrence of depressive symptoms and erectile dysfunction. The occurrence of both depressive symptoms and erectile dysfunction was related to severity of LUTS, nocturia, the use of 5αRI, comorbidity, and sedentary life style. Prevalence of depressive symptoms in patients diagnosed with BPH is associated with severity of LUTS, erectile dysfunction, nocturia, BPH pharmacotherapy (5αRIs), sedentary life style, and comorbidities including obesity.
    International Urology and Nephrology 02/2015; 47(3). DOI:10.1007/s11255-015-0920-5 · 1.29 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The use of finasteride for the treatment of male pattern hair loss has recently been the focus of media and internet attention for potential irreversible sexual dysfunction and severe depression. The purpose of this study was to perform a critical review of the recent studies reporting prolonged sexual dysfunction and depression with the use of finasteride for the treatment of male pattern hair loss. A literature search was performed using PubMed to review the literature pertaining to any potential adverse effects with the use of finasteride and its treatment of male pattern hair loss. The authors conclude that the reports of potential irreversible sexual dysfunction and severe depression do raise concerns about the safety of finasteride; however, these studies are wrought with significant bias. Therefore, larger, randomized, double blind, controlled trials are warranted to further ascertain the true potential risks or confirm long-term safety profile of finasteride use.
    Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology 12/2014; 7(12):51-5.

Preview (2 Sources)

Available from