PCT: Post Cycle Therapy for Steroids


Post cycle therapy is essential to normalize the natural production of testosterone after a steroid cycle. For this purpose, athletes and bodybuilders make use of different drugs for post cycle therapy treatment which help restore testosterone levels or reduce estrogen levels.

The Use of Nolvadex

One of the most common types of drug used during PCT is a SERM (Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulator) which has the ability to inhibit estrogen production with respect to some genes and may also act as an estrogen with respect to others. One such SERM is Nolvadex which is commonly used by athletes and bodybuilders.

Nolvadex has estrogenic effects on bones, which brings about an increase in bone density making you stronger. It also prevents gynecomastia which is the abnormal production of mammary glands in males.  Therefore, due to its discerning abilities towards some genes, such drugs are considered to be ‘selective’ in nature.

However, the use of Nolvadex in post cycle therapy treatment is not only because of its estrogen inhibition ability but also because it helps in raising testosterone levels in the human body.

Nolvadex has a special effect on the pituitary gland and hence the testosterone levels on the human body increase. On an average, 20 mgs of Nolvadex result in about 150% increase in testosterone levels.

Dosage of Nolvadex

Typically, doctors recommend 20 mgs of Nolvadex per day during PCT, yet, some may use higher doses.   However, studies suggest a higher dose of Nolvadex or any other anti-estrogen for that matter is highly ineffective as it may not result in too much increase in testosterone levels.   Therefore, doctors suggest that bodybuilders stack Nolvadex with other estrogen inhibitor drugs.

Drugs such as Arimidex or Letrozole might be used in small doses along with Nolvadex to prevent gynecomastia and increase testosterone production.

It is also useful to stack drugs for post cycle therapy treatment because you may not know what drug your body will respond to. It also allows you to consume reasonable doses of each drug thereby preventing any negative effect demonstrated by consumption of large doses.


Being a selective estrogen receptor modulator, clomid is a popular infertility drug in the medical world. But, owing to its property of blocking estrogen inhibition, it has exceptional benefits for bodybuilders and athletes.

Usually taken in the form of pills the generic drug in clomid is clomiphene citrate, a synthetic form of estrogen, which stimulates the production of testosterone. For this reason, it offers benefits for bodybuilders too.  Although it is a weaker drug, it is used by many athletes to increase their testosterone levels and bind estrogen receptors.  Athletes use it during post cycle therapy, for restoring natural testosterone levels in the body.

Clomid is weaker than nolvadex; 150 mg of clomid gives the same effect as achieved through using 20 mg nolvadex.  However, the recommended per day dosage of clomid is around 50mg to 100mg.

Benefits of Clomid

⦁    Stimulates release of testosterone

⦁    Prevents gynecomastia

⦁    Can be used safely as a long term treatment for low testosterone levels

⦁    Has fewer side effects than other similar drugs such as nolvadex

⦁    Normalizes hormone level in bodybuilders

Side Effects of Clomid

The side effects of clomid occur only if it is used in heavy doses for a long time.  

Inappropriate doses also result in several negative side effects such as: vision problems, stomach ache, cardiovascular diseases, nausea; Including stomach ache, vomiting and severe feeling of nausea, headaches; prolong use of clomid results in headaches which can extend to migraines, stroke, chest pain, weight gain, back ache, hair loss, fatigue, dehydration of skin etc.

The drug is said to give positive results in most cases but should only be taken after proper consultation and expert advice.

The Use of HCG

Restoring endogenous testosterone production is of great concern at the end a steroid cycle.  This is  when low androgen levels lead to problems caused by negative feedback in the body due to synthetic steroid use.  

The biggest concern is the action of cortisol, which in many ways is balanced out by the effect of androgens.  Cortisol sends the opposite message to the muscles than testosterone, or to breakdown protein in the cell.  Left unchecked (by an extremely low testosterone level) in the body, cortisol can quickly strip much of your new muscle mass away.

Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin, or HCG is a peptide hormone produced by the embryo during pregnancy and by placenta to help control hormones in pregnant women.

Bodybuilders use HCG for post cycle therapy because it mimics the Leutenizing Hormone which is what stimulates the testes to produce testosterone.  HCG used during a cycle can help one avoid testicular atrophy.  Some may still use HCG in reduced doses accompanied by drugs such as Nolvadex to deal with estrogen related side effects.

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