What Is Avodart?
The brand name of the generic drug Dutasteride, Avodart is a 5-alpha-reductase inhibitor that is similar to the medication Proscar (Finasteride). Avodart blocks the 5-alpha-reductase enzymes, thus preventing the conversion of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT plays a role in the development of benign prostatic hyperplasia and is a major cause of male pattern baldness.
By reducing DHT levels, Avodart can successfully shrink an enlarged prostate, relieving the symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Avodart is approved by the FDA for treatment of this condition and is taken orally, typically once a day.
Avodart has also seen very positive results in clinical trials to treat male pattern baldness. While Avodart is not recognized by the FDA for this treatment, it is often prescribed to men experiencing hair loss.
Male Pattern Baldness
The first 2 phases of clinical trials for Avodart in the treatment of male pattern baldness were conducted with success in 2002, but were then abandoned for unknown reasons. Phase III, a 6-month study using a .5 milligram dose of dutasteride, was completed in 2009 but future plans to present the research to the FDA for approval have not been announced. Compared to the similar FDA approved medication, Proscar, Avodart is much more effective at stimulating hair regrowth and can do so using much smaller doses.