Masteron, the most recognized trade name for drostanolone propionate, is an injectable anabolic steroid derived from dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Here, the DHT backbone has been modified with a 2-methyl group to increase its anabolic properties, making this agent significantly more effective at promoting the growth of muscle tissue than its non-methylated parent. Drostanolone propionate is described in product literature as a “steroid with powerful anabolic and anti-estrogenic properties,” and indeed does seem to share some of both properties. Admittedly, however, its anabolic properties are more properly described as moderate, especially when placed in the context of other agents. The drug is most often used by dieting bodybuilders and athletes in speed sports, where it is highly favored for its ability to produce solid increases in lean muscle mass and strength, accompanied by reductions in body fat level.
Drostanolone propionate is usually supplied in the form of 1 mL and 2 mL ampules and 10 mL vials containing 50 mg/ml or 100 mg/ml of steroid in oil.
When used for physique- or performance-enhancing purposes by men, this drug is usually injected three times per week. The total weekly dosage is typically 200-400 mg, which is taken for six to 12 weeks. This level of use is sufficient to provide measurable gains in lean muscle mass and strength. Masteron is most commonly applied when lean mass or cutting is desired. For the latter, it is often combined with other non-aromatizable steroids such as Winstrol, Primobolan, Parabolan or Anavar. Such stacks are known to greatly aid muscle retention and fat loss, during a period that can be very catabolic without steroids.
When used for physique- or performance-enhancing purposes by women, a dosage of 50 mg per week is most common, taken for four to six weeks. Virilization symptoms are rare at this dosage, provided the duration of intake is not extended for too long. Note that due to the short-acting nature of the propionate ester, the total weekly dosage is usually subdivided into smaller injections given once every second or third day.
Estrogenic: Drostanolone is not aromatized by the body, and is not measurably estrogenic. An anti-estrogen is not necessary when using this steroid, as gynecomastia should not be a concern even among sensitive individuals. Since estrogen is the usual culprit with water retention, drostanolone instead produces a lean, quality look to the physique with no fear of excess subcutaneous fluid retention. This makes it a favorable steroid to use during cutting cycles, when water and fat retention are major concerns. As a non-aromatizable DHT derivative, drostanolone may impart an anti-estrogenic effect, the drug competing with other (aromatizable) substrates for binding to the aromatase enzyme.
Androgenic: Although classified as an anabolic steroid, androgenic side effects are still possible with this substance, especially with higher than normal therapeutic doses. This may include bouts of oily skin, acne and body/facial hair growth. Anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS) may also aggravate male pattern hair loss. Women are warned of the potential virilizing effects of AAS. These may include a deepening of the voice, menstrual irregularities, changes in skin texture, facial hair growth and clitoral enlargement.
Drostanolone is a steroid with relatively low androgenic activity relative to its tissue-building actions, making the threshold for strong androgenic side effects comparably higher than with more androgenic agents such as testosterone, methandrostenolone or fluoxymesterone. Note that drostanolone is unaffected by the 5-alpha reductase enzyme, so its relative androgenicity is not affected by the concurrent use of finasteride or dutasteride.
Liver Toxicity: Masteron is not c17-alpha alkylated, and not known to have hepatotoxic properties. Liver toxicity is unlikely.
Cardiovascular: Anabolic-androgenic steroids can have deleterious effects on serum cholesterol. This includes a tendency to reduce HDL (good) cholesterol values and increase LDL (bad) cholesterol values, which may shift the HDL to LDL balance in a direction that favors greater risk of arteriosclerosis. The relative impact of an anabolic-androgenic steroid on serum lipids is dependant on the dose, route of administration (oral versus injectable), type of steroid (aromatizable or non-aromatizable) and level of resistance to hepatic metabolism. Drostanolone should have a stronger negative effect on the hepatic management of cholesterol than testosterone or nandrolone due to its non-aromatizable nature, but a weaker impact than c-17 alpha alkylated steroids. Anabolic-androgenic steroids may also adversely affect blood pressure and triglycerides, reduce endothelial relaxation and support left ventricular hypertrophy, all potentially increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease and myocardial infarction.
Testosterone Suppression: All AAS, when taken in doses sufficient to promote muscle gain, are expected to suppress endogenous testosterone production. Without the intervention of testosterone-stimulating substances, testosterone levels should return to normal within one to four months of drug cessation. Note that prolonged hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism can develop secondary to steroid abuse, necessitating medical intervention.
The above side effects are not inclusive.
Drostanolone propionate is presently unavailable as a prescription drug product. Most products are of underground origin.
Ringold HJ, et al. 2-Methyl and 2-hydroxymethylene-androstane derivatives. J Am Chem Soc 1959;81:427-32.
About the Author:
William Llewellyn is the author of the anabolic steroid reference guide, ANABOLICS 10th Edition. He is also a longtime team member at Muscular Development, having been a regular monthly columnist since 2002. William adapted this steroid profile from his work at anabolic.org. He is also credited with helping to develop ROIDTEST™, an at-home steroid testing kit used to identify real and fake steroid products.