This medication is used to shrink an enlarged prostate in men with a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia. It works by lowering amounts of the hormone responsible for prostate growth (dihydrotestosterone). Dutasteride reduces urinary blockage and improves urine flow.
Take this medication by mouth once daily, with or without food. Swallow the medication whole.
Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. Remember to use it at the same time each day. It may take 3 to 6 months before you notice an improvement of your symptoms.
The following side effects have been reported by at least 1% of people taking this medication. Many of these side effects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over time.
Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects;
Breast enlargement or tenderness.
Decreased sexual desire or ability.
Erectile dysfunction (difficulty getting or keeping an erection).
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
Difficulty breathing or wheezing
Rash, hives, or itching
Swelling of the eyelids, face, lips
Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking this medication.
Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Blood donation: Men taking this medication should not donate blood until at least 6 months have passed following their last dose. This is to prevent pregnant women from being exposed to dutasteride during a blood transfusion.
Liver disease: People with liver disease should discuss with their doctor how this medication may affect their medical condition, how their medical condition may affect the dosing and effectiveness of this medication, and whether any special monitoring is needed.
PSA test: Dutasteride can decrease PSA (prostate specific antigen) levels by up to 50%. Doctors often measure PSA levels to test for prostate cancer. PSA levels can still be measured for this purpose, but your doctor will need to adjust the results in order for the test to be accurate. If you are having a PSA test, ensure your doctor knows that you are taking dutasteride.
Women and children: Dutasteride is intended for use by men only. Women and children must avoid contact with the medication, as it is absorbed through the skin. If contact occurs, wash the exposed area immediately with soap and water. Women who may be pregnant must avoid touching any pills of dutasteride (even ones that are not leaking).
Pregnant women: This medication is intended for use by men only. Pregnant women or women who may be pregnant should not handle dutasteride because the medication can be absorbed through the skin and may cause abnormalities in the baby. If a pregnant woman accidentally comes in contact with the capsules, she should wash the contact area immediately with soap and water.
Breast-feeding: Dutasteride is not intended for use by women. It is not known if dutasteride passes into breast milk. Do not handle this medication if you are breast-feeding.
Children: This medication is not intended for use by children. The safety and effectiveness of dutasteride have not been established for use by this age group.
There may be an interaction between dutasteride and any of the following:
·1 "azole" antifungals (e.g., fluconazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole)
·6 macrolide antibiotics (e.g., erythromycin, clarithromycin)
·8 protease inhibitors (e.g., indinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir)
If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:
·1 stop taking one of the medications,
·2 change one of the medications to another,
·3 Change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or leave everything as is.
An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctor about how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.
Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications that you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.
If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature at 77 degrees F (25 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Brief storage between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) is permitted. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.