Side-Effects of Deca-Durabolin
The first thing to note about Deca Durabolin is that its presence suppresses natural testosterone production in the body. A single dose of 200mg can reduce the body’s testosterone production by as much as 75%. This can lead to low testosterone unless the nandrolone compound is augmented with a testosterone supplement.
Low testosterone is known to cause loss of sex drive, listlessness and lack of energy, erectile dysfunction (known sometimes as “Deca Dick”), depression and increased irritability. These effects are very easily mitigated by taking a testosterone supplement, however, and these are quasi-essential in an anabolic steroid cycle anyway.
As a 19-nortestosterone compound, nandrolone is a progestin – a synthetic progesterone. Progesterones can activate the estrogen cycle by stimulating mammary tissue – while it aromatizes to estrogen at about 20% of the rate of a testosterone-based steroid, it does still occur and can cause water retention and gynecomastasia, which is then aggravated by the action of the progestin.
To mitigate such side-effects, Deca-Durabolin can be used with anti-estrogen medications such as anastrozole and letrozole, marketed as Armidex and Femara respectively. These inhibit the process by which nandrolone is esterised into estrogen and can protect effectively against its progesterone action as well. Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators can also be used, which bind to estrogen receptors, preventing the free estrogen in the blood from binding, but for some men these are insufficient, and will do nothing to control water retention, so anti-estrogens are preferable. Alternatively, many body-builders and other athletes use Decabolin where they would normally use Deca-Durabolin in a cycle. Decabolin is an anabolic steroid legal in the United States, which incorporates an estrogen blocking action and can be taken orally to produce very similar effects to Deca-Durabolin.
Like most anabolic steroids, it can sometimes cause an increase in blood pressure, but so long as water retention is controlled and mitigated by diet and care with nandrolone dosage, this is unlikely to be a problem.
Nandrolone supplements can also cause a loss of HDL cholesterol, but this can be combated with a diet rich in omega fatty acids, low in saturated fats and simple sugars and regular cardiovascular workouts.
The androgenic side effects of most anabolic steroids – male pattern baldness, increased facial and body hair, acne and increased aggression or “Roid Rage” – are all but absent from Deca Durabolin, but may appear if the individual has a genetic predisposition to these traits. It is common among steroid users to combat androgenic effects with a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor, which reduces testosterone to dihydrotestosterone. Nandrolone, however, is the primary hormonal component of Deca-Durabolin and this is not a testosterone. It is reduced to dihydronandrolone which has a more potent androgenic effect and should be avoided at all costs.