Tamoxifen Citrate is a Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulator (SERM) and of all the SERM's we have available is the most common. Commonly referred to by its most popular trade name Nolvadex; Tamoxifen Citrate is used in medical practice to combat breast cancer, but is more commonly found in the arsenal of performance enhancing athletes. While this SERM will not directly influence performance to any significant degree, it serves two distinct purposes that are very valuable; on-cycle protection and Post Cycle Therapy (PCT) recovery. Without question, the latter is far more important than the former, as other means of a more efficient nature are available for on-cycle protection. In any case, as we'll see, Tamoxifen Citrate can also serve the Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) patient, and with all this in mind let's see what we can find.
The premise is simple; many breast cancer cells require estrogen to grow, and as such, estrogen is the enemy to the breast cancer patient. The way it works is straightforward, estrogen binds to the receptors in the cells causing them to grow, but with the use of Tamoxifen Citrate, this process is effectively bound. With Tamoxifen Citrate present, it will actively bind to the receptors thereby preventing estrogen from binding, and as estrogen can no longer bind it cannot cause the dangerous cells to grow. This is one of the most common forms of treatment for premenopausal women, and post-menopausal to a lesser extent, but in either case can be tremendously beneficial.
One of the most common side-effects regarding the use of anabolic steroids is Gynecomastia or male breast enlargement. Due to the use of certain anabolic steroids, testosterone converts to estrogen via the aromatase enzyme, and as estrogen builds up it attaches to the receptors causing this effect. In a similar fashion as discussed above, through supplemental use of Tamoxifen Citrate it will bind in estrogens place effectively preventing Gynecomastia; however, it doesn't always work. Many will find this to be a weak treatment, and will be better served choosing an Aromatase Inhibitor (AI). AI's actively inhibit the aromatase process from occurring, and further reduce the total amount of estrogen in the body, and with no estrogen to bind there can be no Gynecomastia. Further, AI's will aid in protecting against many other side-effects, such as water retention, high blood pressure and high cholesterol to an extent.
When we supplement with anabolic steroids, our natural testosterone production is suppressed; it is inevitable. When we discontinue anabolic steroid use, one of the first orders of business is to stimulate natural testosterone production. Luckily for you, Tamoxifen Citrate can do just that; in-fact, it may indeed be its most efficient purpose. By its direct action, Tamoxifen Citrate stimulates the pituitary to release Luteinizing Hormone (LH) and Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH), both of which are essential to testosterone production. When LH and FSH are released, with LH carrying the brunt of the burden, this signals to the testicles to produce more testosterone.
In the U.S. alone, more than five-million men suffer from low testosterone, with another estimated twenty-million plus suffering from total androgen suppression (Andropause.) As such, many men are beginning to seek out TRT therapy; this is evident by the numerous "Low T" commercials you now see. We've already discussed how Tamoxifen Citrate can increase natural testosterone production in our PCT discussion above, and for some men, this is all the therapy they need to treat their condition. While it may work for some, for the vast majority it will not be enough. To treat any type of low testosterone condition, in most cases, direct exogenous testosterone therapy is needed. Gels, patches, subcutaneous implant pellets and injectable solutions are all options, with injectable testosterone being the only method that is 100% effective.