Dutasteride (Generic Avodart) - Product information and Uses

Dutasteride is a 5-alpha-reductase inhibitor which inhibits the conversion of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Dutasteride is approved by the FDA approved for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Dutasteride is manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline and marketed under the brand name Avodart.
The FDA has added warning to dutasteride about an increased risk of high grade prostate cancer.[7] Whilst the potential for positive, negative or neutral changes to the potential risk of developing prostate cancer with dutasteride has not been established, evidence has suggested it may temporarily reduce the growth and prevalence of benign prostate tumors, but could also mask the early detection of prostate cancer. The primary area for concern is for patients who may develop prostate cancer whilst taking dutasteride for benign prostatic hyperplasia, which in turn could delay diagnosis and early treatment of the prostate cancer, thereby potentially increasing the risk of these patients developing high grade prostate cancer.
Dutasteride belongs to a class of drugs called 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors, which block the action of the 5-alpha-reductase enzymes that convert testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Finasteride, which is also approved for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), in addition to the treatment of male pattern baldness (MPB), belongs to this class of drugs. Dutasteride inhibits both isoforms of 5-alpha reductase, type I and type II, whereas finasteride only inhibits type II. There are no long-term randomized trials comparing the effects of dutasteride and finasteride in patients with BPH.

Dutasteride (Generic Avodart) - Availability And Packaging

Dutasteride is available as Generic Avodart Capsules which is packaged in 0.5 mg capsules.

Dutasteride (Generic Avodart) - Contraindications

The teratogenic effect (abnormalities of physiological development) from dutasteride is harmful to male children. Women who are pregnant should not handle the capsules, as inadvertent consumption could cause birth defects of the male fetus. The adverse effects would be similar to 5-alpha-reductase deficiency, where a developing male child is naturally deficient in 5-alpha reductase type II, and thus unable to synthesize it.
As dutasteride blocks the same process, developing males would have a DHT deficiency with its adverse effects as a result of the drug. Men should not donate blood while taking Avodart and for at least 6 months after treatment ends. Avodart can be carried in the blood and could cause birth defects if a pregnant women receives a transfusion with blood that contains dutasteride.

Side Effects of Dutasteride (Generic Avodart)

The common side effects of Dutasteride (Generic Avodart) are Impotence: 0.8%, Decreased libido: 0.3%, Ejaculation disorders: 0.1%, Breast disorders:0.6%

Dutasteride (Generic Avodart) - Dosage

The recommended dosage to treat enlargement of the prostate gland (BPH) is of 0.5 mg/day.

Additional Information

Additional Info: Prescribing Information

Considerable portions of the text here is from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutasteride and is reproduced here under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License