What is PCT? ( Post cycle therapy)

Post cycle therapy or PCT is a set of measures aimed at the speedy restoration of the production of endogenous (intrinsic) testosterone (testicular functionality) after taking anabolic steroids, minimizing the rollback phenomenon and the negative consequences of taking AS.   

In the bodybuilding world, there is such a thing as the “rollback phenomenon” – the loss of muscle mass and strength after a course of anabolic steroids (AS).

The rollback process is inevitable, and whether it will be more or less depends only on you and on your actions after the course – in other words, you need to perform PCT.

Correct PCT will minimize rollback and help keep the most of your gains on the course.

But if you act incorrectly, or worse, inaction, everything you have typed will be lost by you, mostly or completely.   

PCT should always be carried out, no matter how easy or weak the course is.

Some sources on the Internet, voiced the opinion that if the course is the first, or if the duration of the course did not exceed 6 weeks, and the drugs were not “heavy”, then PCT is not necessary https://theroids.ws/post-amp-on-cycle-therapy/.

This is a very dangerous misconception that can lead to such bad consequences:

  • Gynecomastia after the course,
  • Long-term restoration of the production of exogenous hormones and the loss of all recruited muscle mass,
  • Balance shifts towards estrogen and subsequent fat gain after the course.
  • Drop in libido (erection problems) after the course

FOR THE BEGINNING, I WOULD LIKE TO UNDERSTAND WHY IS THIS PHENOMENON HAPPENING AS A ROLLBACK?

As we know, absolutely all AU is nothing more than a synthetic analogue of the male sex hormone – testosterone.

Our body is a complex self-regulating system and parts of the brain such as the hypothalamus and pituitary gland are responsible for regulating the natural level of testosterone (sex hormones), and the testes are responsible for production.

(The so-called hypothalamus-pituitary-testicles arc)

Testosterone levels are regulated by a feedback mechanism. Roughly speaking, if there is a lot of testosterone (sex hormones) in the body, the hypothalamus gives an “order” to the pituitary gland, which in turn gives an “order” to the testicles to slow down, and if the course is heavy or long, then the subsequent stop of testosterone production (complete or partial testicular atrophy). Spermatogenesis also slows down.

This is why some people notice in AC courses how the testicles become much smaller in size.

Some sources mistakenly believe that testicular shrinkage is due to a decrease in the number of Leydig cells, which are responsible for the production of testosterone, but this is not true. The volume of Leydig cells is no more than 5% of the testicle mass and a decrease in the number of these cells has practically no effect on the size of the testicles.

Testicular atrophy

As mentioned above, the use of exogenous testosterone for a long time and in high doses can lead to testicular atrophy.

Complete atrophy is not reversible. It leads to infertility and stops the production of its own testosterone and spermatogenesis.

Subatrophy – partial atrophy – is a reversible process that can be blocked with gonadotropin.  

Having “earned” complete atrophy, you will be forced to take testosterone for the rest of your life. 

You should not be afraid of atrophy.

You can always prevent testicular atrophy by taking appropriate medications.

But even if subatrophy has occurred, after the cancellation of the AU, everything will return to “normal” after a while. Another thing is that if this recovery process is not spurred, then the recovery lines will be significantly delayed, which in turn will directly affect the amount of rollback after the course theroids.ws.

Also, if you are using steroids that are prone to aromatization – i.e. conversion into estrogens, then the hypothalamus –gipophysis – testicle arc will be suppressed several times stronger. Because, a high level of estrogen is an additional signal for the hypothalamus to decrease the production of testosterone.

It is also necessary to consider that there are steroids that do not aromatize, but suppress testosterone production quite strongly.

These include nandrolone and trenbolone , which are progestins , i.e. are not converted to estrogen, but are able to bind to the progesterone receptors of the pituitary gland and thereby inhibit the production of testosterone.

HOW TO PREVENT SUPPRESSION OF TESTOSTERONE (TESTOSTERONE ATROPHY) IN THE COURSE?

  1. Use no flavoring preparations (Primobolan , Turinabol , oxandrolone , boldenone , stanozolol)  
  2. Use drugs with a short duration of action – not working around the clock. (For example, methandienone has a half-life of 6 hours, if half the daily dosage is taken at 7 and 12 hours, then there will be practically no suppression)
  3. Use Gonadotropin on the AC course, every 3 weeks of the course, or immediately 3 weeks before the end of the course. (The most effective way to prevent testicular atrophy)  

I would like to add that, light courses lasting up to 6 weeks (in which drugs are used, the period of action of which does not exceed 5 days) moderately inhibit the hypothalamus-pituitary-testes arc.

To recover after such courses, anti-estrogenic drugs are used – clomid and tamoxifen , however, they are used after courses of any complexity.

Recovery is quick and does not require PCT for more than 1 month.

The use of antiestrogens after the course of the AU solves several problems :

  • It makes it possible to avoid estrogen-dependent side effects (since the balance of hormones is disturbed on the estrogen side, the development of post-cycle gynecomastia, female-type fat deposits is possible )
  • By lowering the level of estrogen, we signal the hypothalamus that there are few sex hormones (testosterone), and it is necessary to begin enhanced stimulation of its production by the testicles.