The research base spans many disciplines and goes back almost 50 years. To help researchers get oriented, an on-ramp was added.
In the Systems & functions area, a new bibliography was added: Adverse effects on skin, comprising nine case reports. The gynecomastia bibliography has been expanded. The bibliography on the musculoskeletal system has been expanded and moved to its own page. A bibliography on cancer risks was added.
In Research 2020–2022, papers are now grouped by field and topic for easier browsing. Special Topics are organized by theme. Notably, six bibliographies share the theme of androgens and androgen signaling.
In 2022, several posts noted that social context has been a crucial factor in concealing finasteride risks and harms. Social dynamics are mostly ignored in medical research and clinical practice. This omission can stoke disagreements between physicians and patients when a treatment proves harmful. A bibliography on the role of social context was added.
There are numerous similarities between Propecia and Vioxx which came to market in the same era. Analyses of Vioxx documents showed how Merck concealed safety concerns and manipulated physicians and journals to promote the drug. Learn more in a bibliography on Merck and the Vioxx debacle.
There are insights to be learned from the early history of finasteride and dutasteride. The research of J. Imperato-McGinley came to the attention of Roy Vagelos in the 1970s when he was the head of Merck’s research division. When the company set out to develop a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor, it relied on Imperato-McGinley’s work, then engaged her as a consultant and investigator.
Merck conducted Phase I and II trials of Proscar (finasteride 5 mg) from the 1980s through 1990. Phase III trials for Proscar and Propecia (finasteride 1 mg) occurred during the 1990s. Substantially all clinical trials of both drugs, as well as GSK’s Avodart (dutasteride), appear in this bibliography.
Imperato-McGinley had studied a population with 5-alpha reductase deficiency in the Dominican Republic. In light of findings from these investigations, she suggested hormones might be more important than the gender in which the child was raised, challenging a tenet of the time. Some researchers criticized the work, and those criticisms call into question Merck’s claims about finasteride safety. This will be elaborated in a separate post. In the meantime, here is a bibliography of criticisms and context of Imperato-McGinley’s research. On a related note, the bibliography on 5-alpha reductase deficiency now has a section on psychological and cultural studies.
Materials were added to the grey literature bibliography.
The page on lasting dysfunctions after use of finasteride or dutasteride now has a concise summary at the top.
2012 was a pivotal year in the long war over finasteride safety. Over the course of the year, a columnist posted dozens of reports to Examiner.com, a blog-style site which was later shuttered (the stories are still available on archive.org). The stories covered FDA actions, a hunger strike, the founding of the Post-Finasteride Syndrome Foundation, and the filing of lawsuits. The stories are collected here: A pivotal year: stories on Propecia effects and lawsuits in Examiner.com (2012).
See also: 2022 – year in review