Overview & History
Deca-Durabolin is more widely known as “Deca” and is the brand name for the anabolic steroid and parent hormone Nandrolone. Deca-Durabolin is specifically the trade name for the anabolic steroid Nandrolone Deconoate – this is the longer ester variant of the Nandrolone hormone. Deca-Durabolin is one of the most popular injectable anabolic steroids used today. We’d actually put it in the top three most used anabolic steroids of all time. Just behind the oral steroid Dianabol (Methandrostenolone) and primarily cutting anabolic Winstrol (Stanozolol).
The medical community first saw Nandrolone Deconoate in 1960, making it one of the first anabolic steroids ever produced after Testosterone variations. It was produced by pharmaceutical giant Organon and in 1962 was released into the prescription drug market. To this day, many believe Deca-Durabolin was the first Nandrolone type steroid produced, but this is false. The faster acting Nandrolone Phenylpropionate, known widely as NPP, was seen in 1957 but because of its quick acting ester and more frequent administration was not seen as effective. Nandrolone Phenylpropionate needs to be injected every day or every other day for effective and stable blood plasma concentrations, however this short half-life made it unpopular among medical experts. Therefore, Nandrolone was attached to the longer ester Deconoate and Deca-Durabolin was born. With the Deconoate ester now attached, injections were now every 15 days as opposed to a lot more regularly.
Deca-Durabolin gained popularity among bodybuilders and steroid users for its ‘mild’ nature and was further made famous when Arnold Schwarzenegger claimed to have used it during offseason and pre-competition phases leading to the Mr. Universe. Its mild nature could be explained further when looking at its anabolic and androgenic rating when compared to Testosterone. Deca Durabolins anabolic rating of 125 is slightly above Testosterones 100 rating, whilst its androgenic rating is much lower at 37, compared to Testosterones 100. This makes the steroid favourable for those wanting to avoid mostly androgenic side effects such as ‘roid rage’, increased aggression, virilisation in females and prostate related issues. Deca’s estrogenic conversion is also low compared to Testosterone. Nandrolone will convert to estrogen at the rate of about 20% of Testosterone making estrogenic related side effects unlikely but certainly realistic. This low amount of estrogenic aromatase activity can be explained by Deca-Durabolin (Nandrolone) being a progestin. Diving deeper into the rate of estrogen expression, we can also report that the liver is at the forefront of estrogenic activity, compared to other tissues such as, the skin, adipose tissue and bones its relatively mild.
Nandrolone is a 19-Nor related anabolic compound. Making this anabolic part of the progestin family, Deca-Durabolin lacks the 19thcarbon structurally, which Testosterone does not. This small alteration makes the two hormones individual. Being a progestin related compound, Deca has a high affinity for the progesterone receptor.
One point to address here is the often repeated “Deca is great for joints”. But why is Nandrolone good for joints? Often on steroid boards or online articles we’re told that Deca-Durabolin lubricates the joints and causes the pain to subside, this is partly true, but the science says that Deca increases collagen synthesis, which may explain some of these anecdotal reports. Deca-Durabolin will actually work as an anti-inflammatory due to its increased expression of the progesterone receptor and promoting both TH1 and TH2 immune pro-inflammatory cytokines. Deca Durabolin has also been shown to increase bone mineral density in human subjects . Weight lifting already does this, but the usage of Nandrolone would enhance this positive effect.
Deca-Durabolin Side Effects
As previously alluded to, Deca-Durabolin is stated as a mild anabolic steroid. This is somewhat true in some regards, but can also been seen as a harsh androgen when looking at certain negative side effects.
Firstly, Deca Durabolin will not cause estrogenic related side effects in the majority. Aromatising at the rate of 20% of the rate of Testosterone, estrogen should not be problematic when using Deca. Estrogenic related side effects include, water retention, hypertension and gynecomastia. These wont be common in most Deca users, but can be magnified in the presence of exogenous Testosterone.
Secondly, as we’ve already cited, Nandrolone is a progestin. This means it can increase the hormones prolactin and progesterone. Both these two hormones can cause their own side effects; these include gynecomastia, lactation, loss of sexual desire and bloating. Both progesterone and prolactin can be managed by the usage of anti-estrogen drugs such as, selective estrogen-receptor modulators (SERMs) and aromatase inhibitors (AIs). SERMs will work to block the magnifying effects of estrogen and AIs will reduce estrogen levels implementing the long feedback mechanism and reducing circulating levels of prolactin. Studies also report that vitamin B6 at the dose of 600mg per day can reduce prolactin. Dopamine agonist drugs such as, Cabergoline and Bromocriptine can also be used to treat elevated prolactin levels in males[9,10, 11].
Deca-Durabolin will not cause liver stress as the androgen is not a 17-alpha alkylated (17aa) type anabolic steroid. However, due to the way anabolic steroids are metabolised and exited by the body, some degree of liver and kidney damage is exerted. Androgenic side effects can be evident in some, these may be, acne, male pattern baldness (MPB) and prostate problems and/or enlargement and aggression.
Although Deca is seen as a mild anabolic steroid when it comes to HPTA (Hypothalamic Pituitary Testicular Axis) inhibition and testosterone suppression, its one of the worst offending anabolic steroids in existence. Being a progestin makes this compound suppressive to endogenous testosterone and other natural sex hormones even in low doses. Studies have stated that a single dosage of 100mg per week reduced testosterone production by up to 60%. This rapid reduction of testosterone is seen by other progestin related androgens such as, Trenbolone. By comparison, exogenous Testosterone Enanthate would take 1-3 weeks to cause total cessation of natural hormones and the HPTA.
Your cholesterol will also negatively be impacted by the usage of Nandrolone. In medical studies, HDL (good cholesterol) has been seen to decrease up to 26% after the administration of Deca-Durabolin over 10 weeks. When compared to exogenous testosterone, Deca was shown to be far worse for cholesterol impairment. Even more recent research has shown Deca to be 11x more damaging to blood vessels than testosterone.
Cycling & Uses
Deca-Durabolin Uses & Cycling
Deca is primarily used for bulking and mass gaining phases due to the increase in nitrogen retention (bloat) the compound will cause. Strength gaining cycles and for those wanting to add weight to their frame can utilise Deca-Durabolin with a Testosterone variant for optimal gains.
We’ve discussed that Deca Durabolin has the long acting ester deconoate attached to the Nandrolone parent hormone. This means if you decide to use Deca, you’d be advised to use this androgen for 10-10 weeks at a minimum. Deca Durabolin is often combined with a long acting estered Testosterone compound such as, Testosterone Enantahte. Both these compounds would be used for 12 weeks. A faster acting injectable or oral could be used for the first 4-6 weeks such as, Dianabol at 30mg per day, Anavar 60mg per day or Winstrol at 50mg per day. However, due to Deca’s bulking nature, D-Bol or Anadrol (Oxymetholone) are suggested.
Worth mentioning is the Test/Deca/D-Bol stack for mass gains. This synergistic cycle was made popular by the golden era bodybuilders in the 1960s and 1970s like Arnold. Used by both beginners, intermediates and advanced level steroid users at varying dosages, this stack has proven the test of time. As a starting point, Testosterone Enantahte at 500mg/wk, Deca-Durabolin 400mg/wk and Dianabol 30mg per day with an AI such as, Aromain 12.5mg per day, could be an effective steroid cycle.
Deca-Durabolin Administration & Dosages
As a medical drug via prescription only, Deca was dosed at 50-100mg every 3-4 weeks. For other weight and muscle wasting diseases, Nandrolone could be prescribed at 100-200mg per week. Doses did not exceed this level in medical papers.
As a performance enhancer and to improve athletic performance and/or muscle, Deca Durabolin is suggested at 400mg per week with a form of injectable Testosterone. More advanced level steroid users wouldn’t venture much above 400-600mg per week as the compound is often combined with other anabolic steroids such as Testosterone Cypionate at 500mg per week.
Due to Deca’s mild androgenic nature, some prefer to use this steroid as their main compound in a stack. A higher dose of 600-800mg per week could be used, but lower Testosterone dosage is used in conjunction at 100-200mg per week or an effective testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) dosage.
Deca-Durabolin should almost always be used with a form of injectable Testosterone and an AI such as, Aromasin 12.5mg per day or Arimidex 1mg three times per week.
Buying & Legality
Buying Deca-Durabolin Online
We’ve mentioned Deca Durabolin is one of the most popular and widely used injectable anabolic steroids ever, so it’s not hard to find. Online and gym sources will almost always stock a Nandrolone based product. Pharmaceutical and underground lab (UGL) products are also stocked by most anabolic steroid dealers.
Pharmaceutical grade Deca-Durabolin 2ml amps of 100mg/ml by Norma Hellas or Organon Greece are priced between $10-25 USD. Underground lab 10ml vials are around $40-120 USD depending on the UGL used. The concentration of 10ml vials would vary between 200-400mg per ml.
Deca-Durabolin is illegal in the United States, but allowed to be used and possessed in the United Kingdom and Canada.
The majority of people will end up purchasing their Deca Durabolin online. This is because it is easily accessible, available to be shipped, and inexpensive. There are many suppliers around the world and competition helps to keep costs of the drug down. Be aware that living in the United States means that purchasing Deca Durabolin online is illegal. It is a violation of the Steroid Control Act of 1990 and is considered a violation of federal law. People caught will be prosecuted under the law. Why is the US so harsh? Well, many steroids are classified as schedule drugs that are monitored by the government. So, in the eyes of the law, there is little difference between something like Deca Durabolin and cocaine. Before purchasing Deca Durabolin, be aware of what laws exist and how they may affect you, in your own country. The more you know, the safer you can approach the world of anabolic steroids and understand the risks before buying steroids.
Deca Durabolin Structural Information:
- Nandrolone + Decanoate Ester
- Formula (base): C18 H26 O2
- Formula (ester):C10 H20 O2
- Melting Point of Base is 122-124C
- Melting Point of Ester is 31 – 32 C
- Male Dosage: 200-600mgs/wk (600mg for advanced users only)
- Female Dosage: 50-100mgs/wk
- Active For 15-18 days
- Can Be Detected Up To18 Months In Urine and Blood
Deca Durabolin References:
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- Competitive progesterone antagonists: receptor binding and biologic activity of testosterone and 19-nortestosterone derivatives. Reel JR, Humphrey RR, Shih YH, Windsor BL, Sakowski R, Creger PL, Edgren RA. Fertil Steril 1979 May;31(5):552-61. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/446780
- Aromatization of androstenedione and 19-nortestosterone in human placental, liver, and adipose tissues (abstract). Nippon Naibunpi Gakkai Zasshi. 1986 Jan 20;62(1):18-25. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3699194
- Studies of biological activity of certain 19-nor steroids in female animals. Pincus G, Chang M, Zarrow M, Hafez E, Merril A. December 1956. https://academic.oup.com/endo/article-abstract/59/6/695/2736549?redirectedFrom=fulltext
- Effects of nandrolone Deca Durabolin on bone mineral content. R, Righi GA, Turchetti V, Vattimo A. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15972619
- Influence of administration of pyridoxine on circadian rhythm of plasma ACTH, cortisol prolactin and somatotropin in normal subjects. Barletta C, Sellini M, Bartoli A, Bigi C, Buzzetti R, Giovannini C. Boll Soc Ital Biol Sper. 1984 Feb 28;60(2):273-8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6324828
- Verhelst J, Abs R, Maiter D, et al. (July 1999). “Cabergoline in the treatment of hyperprolactinemia: a study in 455 patients”. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 84 (7): 2518–22. doi:10.1210/jc.84.7.2518. PMID 10404830. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10404830
- Webster J, Piscitelli G, Polli A, Ferrari CI, Ismail I, Scanlon MF (October 1994). “A comparison of cabergoline and bromocriptine in the treatment of hyperprolactinemic amenorrhea. Cabergoline Comparative Study Group”. N. Engl. J. Med. 331 (14): 904–9. doi:10.1056/NEJM199410063311403. PMID 7915824. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7915824
- Colao A, Di Sarno A, Guerra E, De Leo M, Mentone A, Lombardi G (April 2006). “Drug insight: Cabergoline and bromocriptine in the treatment of hyperprolactinemia in men and women”. Nat Clin Pract Endocrinol Metab 2 (4): 200–10. doi:10.1038/ncpendmet0160. PMID 16932285. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16932285
- The administration of pharmacological doses of testosterone or 19-nortestosterone to normal men is not associated with increased insulin secretion or impaired glucose tolerance. Karl E. Friedl et al. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 68:971, 1989. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2654171
- Influence of nandrolone decanoate on the pituitary-gonadal axis in males. Bijlisma J, Duursma S, Thijssen J, Huber O. Acta Endocrinol 101 (1982):108-12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6812344
- Metabolic effects of nandrolone decanoate and resistance training in men with HIV. Sattler FR, Schroeder ET, Dube MP, Jaque SV, Martinez C, Blanche PJ,Azen S,Krauss RM. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2002. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12388173
- Lipemic and lipoproteinemic effects of natural and synthetic androgens in humans. Crist DM, Peake GT, Stackpole PF, Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol 1986 Jul;13(7):513-8. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1440-1681.1986.tb00933.x
- De Visser, J. et al. Acta Endocrin. (Kbh.) 35 (1960):405
- 1990 Nov;39(11):1167-9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2233278
- Science, Vol 283, Issue 5406, 1277-1278 , 26 February 1999