The benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) drug finasteride (Proscar) is known to work best at relieving symptoms in men with larger prostates. An analysis in the Journal of Urology found that this continues to be the case even after several years of use.
For the analysis, researchers examined data on more than 1,000 men with lower urinary tract symptoms who had been randomly assigned to either finasteride or placebo as part of the Medical Therapy of Prostatic Symptoms (MTOPS) trial. About half the men in each group had an enlarged prostate, defined in this study as 30 mL or greater by prostate ultrasound.
After an average of 4.5 years, the likelihood that symptoms had gotten worse was lower with finasteride than with placebo (78 percent vs 88 percent) among the men with enlarged prostates. But among the men with smaller prostates, finasteride was no more effective than the placebo.
If you’re diagnosed with BPH, ask your doctor how large your prostate is. This information can help you and your doctor decide whether finasteride is worth taking.