by Mike Arnold
For those who are unfamiliar with the term S.A.R.M, let me fill you in. S.A.R.M.’s, which is short for selective androgen receptor modulators, are a new class of drugs designed to provide the anabolic (i.e. tissue building) benefits of steroids, but without the androgenic, estrogenic, and in many cases, cardiovascular side effects typically associated with AAS. This means you don’t have to contend with unwanted issues like gynecomastia, water retention, prostate problems, hair loss/growth, acne, oily skin, emotional disturbances, etc. Depending on the dose administered, they even have a less pronounced effect on the HPTA, resulting in decreased suppression of natural testosterone production. Consequently, PCT is a breeze.
Up to this point, we have seen three S.A.R.M’s enter the marketplace, the first of which was Andarine. In addition to its fairly weak anabolic properties, it was also unacceptably androgenic, causing many to view it as a failure in the area of SARM development. Although still available from some peptide companies, it provides little, if any advantage over conventional steroids. Next to the party was Ostarine. As the first S.A.R.M. to deliver on its promise, Ostarine’s near complete absence of cosmetic side effects allowed it to achieve considerable success in the bodybuilding community. Since then, S.A.R.M. research & development has been at somewhat of a standstill—until now.
Enter LGD-4033. Having recently completed Phase I human clinical trials, a mandatory step in the FDA approval process, LGD-4033 was found to be well tolerated, demonstrating no adverse events among test subjects. In terms of anabolic potency, LGD-4033 performed impressively, resulting in significant increases in muscle size and strength within a short period of time. By all accounts, LGD-4033 appears to be a success, with numerous positive user reviews since its release onto the peptide market.
In order to see more clearly what LGD-4033 is all about, let’s take a look at the highlights of this first round of clinical trials. Being an 8 man (6 active, 2 placebo), single dose escalation study, each participant was provided with a different dose of LGD-4033. The dosages administered to the test subjects were .1 mg, 1 mg, 5 mg, 10 mg, 15 mg, and 22 mg for 2 weeks consecutively, during which time it was evaluated for both safety and tolerability.
As any experienced steroid user knows, the effects of AAS on cardiovascular health markers, such as hematocrit, blood pressure, hemoglobin, and lipids, are a major area of concern for anyone wishing to maintain good cardiovascular health. With traditional AAS causing elevations in all of these markers, often times into a dangerous range, finding a S.A.R.M. capable of avoiding these adverse fluctuations has been a priority among researchers.
Fortunately, LGD-4033 passes with flying colors, with study results showing no change in blood pressure, hematocrit, hemoglobin, or lipids. However, it should be noted that at doses above 5 mg/day, HDL (good) cholesterol levels were lowered below the standard reference range, although they returned to normal upon discontinuation of the drug. The inability of LGD-4033 to affect hematological health markers eliminates the possibility of SARM induced heart attack/stroke—something modern day steroids user have had to contend with quite a bit lately.
The effect of LGD-4033 on testosterone levels is a bit more varied. At dosages below 5 mg/day, total testosterone levels remained within the standard reference range (270-1070 ng/dl), while dosages above 5 mg/day reduced total testosterone into clinical deficiency. However, this does not mean that LGD-4033 at dosages below 5 mg/day have no effect on testosterone production. It simply means that this dosing range prevented the test subjects from falling into clinical deficiency, but for those who are familiar with the flaws of this reference range, it brings little reassurance regarding the drug’s safety in terms of HPTA maintenance.
In reality, LGD-4033 caused a linear decrease in total testosterone levels from baseline at all dosages levels, but the researchers’ claim that this decrease fails to merit statistical significance simply because testosterone levels did not drop below 270 ng/dl, is unintentionally deceptive. This means that someone’s testosterone level could have dropped from 800 ng/dl to 350 ng/dl, yet this massive drop would have been ignored simply because the individual did not end up in a clinically deficient range (-270 ng/dl). However, these results are still significantly better than traditional AAS, as just about all steroids, when administered at effective dosages, tend to result in clinical deficiency within just a few weeks. The fact that the test subjects also made a quick recovery implies that LGD-4033’s suppressive effect on the HPTA is not as long-lasting as AAS.
Unlike most oral steroids, LGD-4033 is non-methylated and therefore lacks the liver toxicity typically present with methylated AAS. Confirmation was obtained when researchers evaluated liver function at both baseline and mid-study, revealing no meaningful alterations in liver readings. This advantage over oral AAS, in combination with minimal hematological disturbances, effectively lifts the cycle duration restrictions encountered with traditional orals. In other words, this S.A.R.M. can be cycled long-term without fear of hepatic dysfunction/injury.
Most men, at some point in their life, end up experiencing prostate enlargement, as well as elevated PSA readings. This is not a big deal if controlled, but can become serious if allowed to get out of hand. Steroids contribute to the problem by attaching to and activating receptor sites within the prostate, promoting hypertrophy and exacerbating any conditions which may be present, such as prostate cancer. For those of you that are getting older or who currently suffer from prostate problems, you will be happy to learn that LGD-4033 has no effect on PSA readings, due to its high degree of selectivity for muscle over the prostate and other organs/systems.
LGD-4033 also has an antiresorptive effect in bone, preventing the release of minerals back into the bloodstream. This is especially beneficial for those diagnosed with osteoporosis. Sebaceous glands, cortisol levels, and heart function (ECG) also appears to be unaffected.
Like with AAS, gains with LGD-4033 are dose-dependent, allowing the individual to tailor their dose according to need. While doses up to 22 mg/day were shown to be safe and well effective, it is difficult to know what dosing range BB’rs will end up at, given their history of pushing things to the limit. With a half-life of roughly 30 hours, once daily dosing is ideal for maintaining steady concentrations of this drug within the bloodstream.
In conclusion, LGD-4033 does exactly what a S.A.R.M. is supposed to do—provide strong anabolic effects without any significant external or internal side effects. Its mild nature makes it a great drug for beginners or for anyone else looking to improve their physique with minimal risk to their health, as well as for women who want to avoid the masculinizing effects of traditional anabolics. It can also be stacked with AAS and/or other S.A.R.M’s in order to further boost muscle growth without placing additional stress on the body.