Propecia and Alcohol

by on August 9, 2012

There is not enough information about the potential interaction between Propecia and alcohol. In general, alcohol is not expected to reduce the effects of finasteride when taken together. Although the manufacturer of Propecia does not provide any specific instructions or recommendations about alcohol use, it is best to avoid or limit alcohol intake while taking this medication.

The potential effects of alcohol on finasteride really depend on how much alcohol is consumed. Alcohol and Propecia are both metabolized in the liver by a certain enzyme known as cytochrome P450. Theoretically, taking this medication can cause an interaction although the actual reaction has not been established and there have been no reports of patients suffering from adverse drug effects due to this combination. Because of the potential risk, people taking Propecia are advised to avoid alcohol or limit alcohol intake.

Furthermore, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol every day while taking Propecia may increase the risk of liver disorder or other dietary deficiencies related to drinking.

Alcohol Health Risks

In a study conducted at the University of California San Francisco, heavy, daily drinking has been linked to an increase in the risk of prostate cancer. The study also found that heavy alcohol drinking may reduce the effectiveness of finasteride (Proscar) in reducing prostate cancer risk. The study, however, was limited and further evaluation in a larger population.

The study does not specifically evaluate the effects of alcohol drinking on finasteride (Propecia).  But since both heavy alcohol drinking and finasteride are both linked to an increase in risk of prostate cancer, it is best to stay safe and avoid drinking too much alcohol while taking Propecia. Alcohol can only aggravate the condition in some men.

Healthcare providers are advised to consider the potential risks of heavy drinking when given recommendations or counseling men about alcohol drinking while on Propecia. As much as possible, men taking finasteried, either for hair loss or other purposes, limit alcohol intake to less than 2-3 drinks per day.


If you are taking Propecia, it is best to discuss with your healthcare provider regarding alcohol intake. Some patients may not be able to safely consume alcohol not because of Propecia but due to some other medical conditions. Your healthcare provider will evaluate your condition and determine whether it is safe for you to consume alcohol.

Feel free to talk with your healthcare provider about your alcohol consumption. He or she can even give you appropriate suggestions if you have alcohol problems.