Pharmaceutical Name: drostanolone (as propionate)
Chemical structure: 2 alpha-methyl-17 beta-hydroxy-5 alpha-androstan-3-one
Molecular weight of base and ester: 360.5356
Effective dose: 100 mg every 2-3 days
Average Street-price: $15-25 per ampul ($30-50 per two ampul package)
Available Doses: 50 mg/ml in 1 or 2 ml vials
Brands & Products:
Syntex Masteril (GB, BG) 50 mg/ml in 2 ml vials (100mg)
Metormon (o.c.) (ES) 50 mg/ml in 2 ml vials (100mg)
Sarva-Syntex / Cilag Masteron (B,PT) 50 mg/ml in 2 ml vials (100mg)
Grünenthal Masterid (o.c.) (G) 50 mg/ml in 2 ml vials (100mg)
Shionogi Mastisol (Japan) 5% injection sol.
Cassenne Permastril (o.c.) (FR) 50 mg/ml in 2 ml vials (100mg)
Unknown company Drolban (o.c.) 50 mg/ml in 1 ml vial
Masteron is hard to find these days, if at all, and that's quite a shame for many competing bodybuilders because in terms of achieving the best results while shedding body-fat, nothing really beats drostanolone. Drostanolone is structurally a 2-methylated form of the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which is formed when testosterone interacts with the 5-alpha-reductase enzyme. DHT is dreaded by many who fear androgenic side-effects such as increased acne and body hair, loss of hair and prostate hypertrophy. 5-alpha-reduction often mediates or speeds up such processes because DHT binds to the androgen receptor 3-4 times better than testosterone. That means androgenically speaking, no steroid is quite as powerful as DHT.
For those looking to reduce body-fat and water retention such a compound is literally a dream. Drostanolone, being 5-alpha reduced, cannot form estrogen upon interaction with the aromatase enzyme yet still shows a very high affinity for it. Because it takes up so much of the aromatase enzyme, yet is refrained from actually using it by its structural make-up, it reduces the amount of estrogen formed1 from other steroids as well because there are less aromatase enzymes to be used by those compounds to form estrogen with. This made stacking with slightly aromatizing compounds such as boldenone much more bearable as it eliminated even the slight aromatisation of such substances. So for bodybuilders the use of drostanolone is not only in limiting estrogens in question, but also eliminating possible estrogen formation from other steroids used during this time for increased anabolic or anti-catabolic activity. This because, especially for larger bodybuilders, drostanolone alone does not suffice to retain the maximum amount of weight.
The reduction of estrogenic capacity of course made drostanolone ill-suited for use as a mass-builder. In fact the gains on it were quite limited. Someone seeking to gain muscle mass rarely, if ever, resorted to a DHT compound. But coupled to its extreme androgenic qualities it lead to the perfect compound to retain strength and mass while shedding body-fat. The absence of estrogen refrained it from increasing water or salt retention, and there is evidence that the androgenic component may expedite the fat loss process2. The exact mechanims by which a rise in androgens stimulates fat loss is not known, but it is theorized that it may be due to catecholamine-induced (epinephrine, norepinephrine and dopamine) lipolysis, caused by the androgen increasing the number of beta-adrenergic receptors (the primary triggers for fat mobilization) on the membrane surface of fat cells. It is my understanding however that the noted decrease in body-fat is mainly due to a slight increase in lean mass and a stagnation of the body-fat, automatically resulting in a loss of body-fat in percentages, after recalibration.
This would also highly promote its use for power- and weightlifters as they compete in weight classes. Drostanolone can promote the increased strength while keeping body-fat the same or even lowering it. Allowing for an increased perfomance without the risk of being cast into a higher and more difficult weight class.
One possible use for drostanolone during the off-season, when gaining mass, may be DHT's affinity for the binding proteins of sex steroids : sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) and albumin. Normally a large amount of testosterone cannot be used by the body in anabolic functions because it is mostly bound to these plasma proteins. When testosterone is administered along with a DHT-compound, the DHT will take up most of the protein and allow the testosterone to exert its massive anabolic effects, thereby increasing the possible gains, especially in lower doses. Of course, due to the limited availability of drostanolone and its high price, this is the type of situation one usually resorts to mesterolone (1-methyl-DHT as in proviron) for. Its cheaper and equally effective to serve this particular purpose (but notably weaker in other aspects, since like DHT its readily deactivated in muscle tissue by the 3-alpha-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase enzyme).
When discussing the side-effects, for once I'm going to go easy. This is because most people are well aware of the side-effects of DHT compounds and scared to death of them because androgenic side-effects caused by mass compounds like testosterone are largely attributed to the formation of DHT at the 5AR receptor enzyme. This may be a time to step back and look what sort of damage DHT can realistically do. An increase in acne is almost always noted, but if that doesn't seem to bother you with other steroids, then why with a short-acting androgen like drostanolone ? Hair loss seems to be the major concern, but if you've dealt with the use of steroids before or are educated to their effects you are aware that it merely speeds up a genetically pre-existing condition of male pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia). This condition only occurs in 30% of men and can easily be detected by examining the men on your mother's side of the family. Androgenetic alopecia is passed on through the X chromosome and thus in matri-linear fashion (mothers side). The rule of thumb being quite simple : if you have it, don't touch this compound, if you don't, then you don't have to worry. Yes, it really can be that simple.
That only leaves benign prostate hypertrophy (enlarged prostate) and the related conditions such as prostate cancer. Recent evidence shows that estrogen too is a mediator in the development of this condition, which would lead us to draw the conclusion that a purely androgenic compound, lest taken with a highly aromatizing substance, has considerably less risk for aggravating such a condition than DHT formed by testosterone. These last two paragraphs to show that perhaps the side-effects of DHT are largely exaggerated. But that doesn't mean they just went away because I said so, extreme caution needs to be exercised by individuals at risk for hair loss and prostate problems. But to add one last bit of perspective, keep in mind that this compound is injected and spread across the body evenly. When DHT is formed by testosterone, its formed in androgen specific tissues, meaning its mostly concentrated in scalp, skin and prostate, which isn't the case here.
Perhaps the most favorable effect of drostanolone is that it can increase muscle hardness and density in the athlete, giving him a more complete and finished look when he steps on stage. A lot of pure androgens have this effect. But with all of them you need an already rather low body-fat level for it to take full effect. A lot of people who had heard of this effect experimented with drostanolone and were sorely disappointed because they were too fat when they started.
Drostanolone is usually a propionate, which is a short-acting ester. That means frequent injections (every 24-48 hours) are needed for maximum effect. This can be quite a pain and cause abscesses due to the many injection marks at the same site, but this has positives too : Drostanolone propionate can be hid from detection in two weeks or less, making it safe for use up to that point without fear of being exposed at a drug test. Not that it would necessarily interrupt plans if it was, because eventhough chromatographic tests have been able to detect DHT compounds since 1997, they are rarely implemented in most sports. No doubt that gave it an edge over things like stanazolol for many athletes.
One major downside is that as time goes by the odds of finding Masteron are quite slim. It hasn't been made in quite a while and its safe to say that 90% of all you'd find out there are fakes. On some foreign markets there are some masteron analogs available, but even these are quite rare and very expensive on European and American domestic markets.
Stacking and Use:
Drostanolone is not a drug that requires the use of alternate drugs. People with a tendency for hypertension may want to take the necessary precautions, but drostanolone does not aromatize at any rate making the use of anti-estrogens irrelevant, both during a cycle to prevent side-effects as post-cycle to boost natural testosterone (E.g. Clomid). There is simply no need for alternate drugs and because its an esterified injectable there is no hazard to the liver worth mentioning either.
Best use is to inject 50-100 mg every day to every other day, depending on your degree of expertise in training and your size of course. Most beginners will be quite satisfied with either 50 mg every other day or 100 mg every 3 days. Mostly used in conjunction with other drugs as DHT is quite easily de-activated in the body (althouth drostanolone's 2-methyl group protects it somewhat from deactivation by stabilizing the 3-keto group).
Drostanolone is best stacked with something in the nature of boldenone (Equipoise) at 300 mg a week. The boldenone gives increased vascularity and the drostanolone adds muscle density while the stack as a whole preserves muscle mass. Although its rare that someone opts for a stack of two compounds with largely similar action, something can be said about stacking drostanolone with Stanazolol (Winstrol/stromba). The drostanolone doesn't stay active at the AR very much, often being drawn to SHBG, albumin, aromatase or 3bHSD, but still adds distinct hardness and boosts strength to some degree. Adding Winstrol, which has higher activity at the Androgen Receptor and some affinity for the progesterone receptor may form quite a synergistic stack. It would also be safe to throw in some nandrolone (Deca-Durabolin) at 200-300 mg per week.
One would almost never use drostanolone while trying to gain mass, except in order to block the aromatase enzyme, which forms estrogen. But a better option there is Proviron, an analog DHT-compound (mesterolone) which is basically only used for that purpose. Drostanolone is too expensive and too hard to come by to employ it for that reason.
1 Hillier SG, van den Boogaard AM, Reichert LE Jr, van Hall EV.,Alterations in granulosa cell aromatase activity accompanying preovulatory follicular development in the rat ovary with evidence that 5alpha-reduced C19 steroids inhibit the aromatase reaction in vitro. J Endocrinol 1980 Mar;84(3):409-19
2 . Longcope C, Baker R, Johnston CC Jr., Androgen and estrogen metabolism: relationship to obesity. Metabolism 1986 Mar;35(3):235-7