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Active substance(s): FINASTERIDE / FINASTERIDE / FINASTERIDE
PROSCAR® TABLETS / FINASTERIDE 5mg TABLETS
This medicine is available as one of the above names but will be referred to as Proscar
throughout this leaflet.
This medicine is for use in men only
Read all of this leaflet carefully before you start taking this medicine because it contains
important information for you.
• Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again.
• If you have any further questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
• This medicine has been prescribed for you only. Do not pass it on to others. It may harm
them, even if their signs of illness are the same as yours.
• If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor or pharmacist. This includes any possible side
effects not listed in this leaflet. See section 4.
In this leaflet:
1. What Proscar is and what it is used for
2. What you need to know before you take Proscar
3. How to take Proscar
4. Possible side effects
5. How to store Proscar
6. Contents of the pack and other information
1. WHAT PROSCAR IS AND WHAT IT IS USED FOR
Proscar contains a medicine called finasteride. This belongs to a group of medicines called ‘5alpha reductase inhibitors’.
Proscar shrinks the prostate gland in men when it is swollen. The prostate gland is found
underneath the bladder (but only in men). It produces the fluid found in semen. A swollen
prostate gland can lead to a condition called ‘benign prostatic hyperplasia’ or BPH.
What is BPH?
If you have BPH it means that your prostate gland is swollen. It can press on the tube that urine
passes through, on its way out of your body.
This can lead to problems such as:
• feeling like you need to pass urine more often, especially at night
• feeling that you must pass urine right away
• finding it difficult to start passing urine
• when you pass urine the flow of urine is weak
• when you pass urine the flow stops and starts
• feeling that you cannot empty your bladder completely
In some men, BPH can lead to more serious problems, such as:
• urinary tract infections
• a sudden inability to pass urine
• the need for surgery
What else should you know about BPH?
• BPH is not cancer and does not lead to cancer, but the two conditions can be present at the
• Before you start Proscar, your doctor will do some simple tests to check whether you have
Talk to your doctor if you have any questions about this.
2. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU TAKE PROSCAR
Do not take Proscar:
• if you are a woman (because this medicine is for men)
• if you are allergic (hypersensitive) to finasteride or any of the other ingredients of this medicine
(listed in Section 6).
Do not take Proscar if any of the above apply to you. If you are not sure, talk to your doctor or
Warnings and precautions
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking Proscar if:
• your partner is pregnant or planning to become pregnant. You should use a condom or other
barrier method of contraception when taking Proscar. This is because your semen could contain
a tiny amount of the drug and may affect the normal development of the baby’s sex organs.
• you are going to have a blood test called PSA. This is because Proscar can affect the results
of this test.
If you are not sure, talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking Proscar.
Proscar should not be used in children.
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking, have recently taken or might take any other
medicines. Proscar does not usually affect other medicines.
Taking Proscar with food and drink
Proscar can be taken with or without food.
Pregnancy and breast feeding
• Proscar should not be taken by women.
• Do not touch crushed or broken Proscar tablets if you are a woman who is pregnant or
planning to become pregnant (whole tablets are coated to stop contact with the medicine
during normal use). This is because this medicine may affect the normal development of the
baby’s sex organs.
• If a woman who is pregnant comes into contact with crushed or broken Proscar tablets, speak
to your doctor.
Driving and using machines
Proscar is not likely to affect you being able to drive, use tools or machines.
• Lactose monohydrate. This is a type of sugar. If you have ever been told by your doctor that
you cannot tolerate or digest some sugars (have an intolerance to some sugars), talk to your
doctor or pharmacist before taking this medicine.
3. HOW TO TAKE PROSCAR
Always take this medicine exactly as your doctor or pharmacist has told you. Check with your
doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure.
The translation of the days of the week on the blister strip is as follows:
Taking this medicine
• The usual dose is one tablet each day.
• Take this medicine by mouth.
• Your doctor may prescribe Proscar along with another medicine (called doxazosin) to help
control your BPH.
If you take more Proscar than you should
If you take too many tablets by mistake, contact your doctor immediately.
If you forget to take Proscar
• If you forget to take a tablet, skip the missed dose.
• Take the next dose as usual.
• Do not take a double dose to make up for a forgotten dose.
If you stop taking Proscar
Your condition may show an early improvement after taking Proscar. However, it may take at
least six months for the full effect to develop. It is important to keep taking Proscar for as long as
your doctor tells you, even if you do not feel any benefit straight away.
If you have any further questions on the use of this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
4. POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS
Like all medicines, this medicine can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them. The
following side effects may happen with this medicine:
Stop using Proscar and immediately contact a doctor if you experience any of the following
• Swelling of face, lips, tongue or throat, difficulty swallowing and breathing difficulties
• Skin rashes, itching, or lumps under your skin (hives).
Other side effects may include:
• You may be unable to have an erection (impotence)
• You may have less desire to have sex
• You may have problems with ejaculation, for example a decrease in the amount of semen
released during sex. This decrease in the amount of semen does not appear to affect normal
These side effects above may disappear after a while if you continue taking Proscar. If not, they
usually resolve after stopping Proscar. Other side effects reported in some men are:
• Breast swelling or tenderness
• Palpitations (feeling your heartbeat)
• Changes in the way your liver is working, which can be shown by a blood test
• Pain in your testicles
• An inability to have an erection which may continue after stopping the medication
• Male infertility and/or poor quality of semen. Improvement in the quality of the semen has
been reported after stopping medication
• Decrease in sex drive that may continue after stopping the medication
• Problems with ejaculation that may continue after stopping the medication
You should promptly report to your doctor any changes in your breast tissue such as lumps,
pain, enlargement or nipple discharge as these may be signs of a serious condition, such as
If any of the side effects get serious, or if you notice any side effects not listed in this leaflet
please tell your doctor or pharmacist. It will help if you make a note of what happened, when it
started and how long it lasted.
What else should you know about Proscar?
Proscar (finasteride) is not licensed to treat prostate cancer. Information collected for a clinical
trial in men taking finasteride for 7 years showed:
• The number of men who developed prostate cancer was lower in men taking finasteride
compared with those taking nothing.
• The number of men who had a high score in a tumour grading system was higher in some of
those taking finasteride compared to those taking nothing.
• The effect of long-term use of finasteride on tumours of this kind is not known.
If you would like further information about the tumour grading system or this trial, please talk to
Reporting of side effects
If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor, pharmacist or nurse. This includes any possible
side effects not listed in this leaflet. You can also report side effects directly via the Yellow Card
Scheme at: www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard.
By reporting side effects you can help provide more information on the safety of this medicine.
5. HOW TO STORE PROSCAR
• Keep out of the sight and reach of children.
• Do not store above 30°C. Store in the original package.
• Do not remove the tablets from the blister strip until you are ready to take your medicine.
Crushed or broken Proscar should not be handled by women who are or may become pregnant.
• Do not use after the expiry date printed on the carton or blister label. The expiry date refers to
the last day of that month.
• If the tablets become discoloured or show any other signs of deterioration, you should seek
the advice of your pharmacist who will tell you what to do.
• Medicines should not be disposed of via wastewater or household waste. Ask your pharmacist
how to dispose of medicines no longer required. These measures will help to protect the
6. CONTENTS OF THE PACK AND OTHER INFORMATION
Each tablet contains 5mg of the active ingredient finasteride in a blue apple-shaped film coated
tablet coded 'MSD 72' on one side and 'PROSCAR' on the reverse.
Proscar also contain the following excipients: lactose monohydrate, pregelatinised maize starch,
sodium starch glycolate, yellow iron oxide (E172), docusate sodium, microcrystalline cellulose
and magnesium stearate.
Coating: hypromellose, hydroxypropylcellulose, titanium dioxide (E171), talc and indigo carmine
aluminium lake (E132).
Proscar is available in a calendar blister pack of 28 tablets.
This leaflet gives you some important patient information about Proscar. If you have questions
after you read it ask your doctor or pharmacist, who will give you further information.
PL No: 15814/0248
Proscar® Tablets / Finasteride 5mg Tablets
This product is manufactured by Merck Sharp & Dohme Ltd, Shotton Lane, Cramlington,
Northumberland, England and is procured from within the EU and repackaged by the Product
Licence holder: O.P.D. Laboratories Ltd., Unit 6 Colonial Way, Watford, Herts WD24 4PR.
Leaflet revision date (ref) 10.08.2015.
Proscar is a registered trade mark of Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., USA.
To request a copy of this leaflet in Braille, large print or audio please call 01923 332 796.
Source: Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency
Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. This information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.