What Is Deca Durabolin? | Nandrolone Benefits & Effects [Full Guide]

Updated: Sep 5

Talking about deca durabolin, also known as nandrolone and deca, is a controversial subject.


Therefore i am writing the disclaimer below first.


We do not advocate the use of this anabolic steroid, or any drug or hormone for that fact, and this article is purely for informational and educational purposes only.

What Is Deca Durabolin:


Deca Durabolin is also known as deca and formerly known as nandrolone or 19-nortestosterone, among other names.


Nandrolone - this photo shows its chemical structure.

Image Credit: PubChem


Nandrolone is similar to testosterone, click here to read more about testosterone.


It is an androgen and a powerful anabolic steroid (commonly referred to as an AAS) which is used by mostly bodybuilders and athletes in the form of different esters, most commonly nandrolone decanoate (Deca Durabolin) and nandrolone phenylpropionate (also known as NPP).


Nandrolone and it's esters have a strong anabolic effects and a weak androgenic effect, which give them a more mild side effect profile when compared to other highly androgenic steroids and make them more suitable for use in women and children.


Nandrolone is also used in the treatment of anaemia, cachexia (wasting disease), osteoporosis, breast cancer and for some other diseases.


Nandrolone is most commonly given by intramuscular injection (IM - in the muscle), but can also be given subcutaneously (subq - in the fat).


Source: Wikipedia

What Does Deca Durabolin Do:


Deca (Nandrolone) is used in certain diseases by conventional medicine.


The legitimate uses of nandrolone include:


  • Anaemia.

  • Cachexia (wasting disease)

  • Osteoporosis.

  • Breast Cancer.


This is because of nandrolone's effects on the bodies hormonal system (which can interact with breast cancer), increased protein synthesis, increased blood cell production, strengthening of the bones and it's possible increase in appetite.

How Does Deca Durabolin Work:


Note: This section contains a lot of scientific phrases and sentences, if you wish to read the summary skip to the bottom of this section.


Deca (Nandrolone) works by interacting with the androgen receptor (AR) in a similar way testosterone and other anabolic androgenic steroids do.


However, unlike testosterone and some other AAS, nandrolone is not potentiated in androgenic tissues such as the scalp, the skin and the prostate, reducing the androgenic side effects of AAS such as increased body hair growth, enlarged prostate etc.


This is because nandrolone is metabolised by 5α-reductase enzyme into the much weaker androgen receptor ligand 5α-dihydronandrolone (also known as DHN), this ASS has a reduced affinity for the androgen receptor (AR) relative to nandrolone and also a weaker AR agonistic potency.


The lack of alkylation on the 17α-carbon in deca's chemical structure drastically reduces the hepatotoxic (liver damaging) potential of nandrolone.


Estrogen effects resulting from a reaction with the aromatase enzyme are also reduced due to it's lessened interaction with this enzyme, but estrogenic effects such as gynecomastia and reduced libido may still occur at sufficiently high doses.


Unlike many other AAS, nandrolone is also a progestogen (interacts with the progesterone receptor).


It binds to the progesterone receptor with approximately ~22% of the affinity of progesterone.


The progestogenic activity of nandrolone serves to augment it's antigonadotropic effects, as the antigonadotropic activity is a known property of progestogens, this means it will further reduce down stream testosterone production on the HPT-axis (HPTA).


Nandrolone also has a low affinity for human serum sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG), it is about 5% that of testosterone and 1% that of DHT.


Nandrolone works by interacting with the AR.

Summary Of Deca:


In simple terms, this means nandrolone is a more powerful anabolic with a greater potential for increasing muscle and bone mass while limiting it's androgenic effects, reducing side effects.


It is less harsh on the liver and will also not convert to estrogen as fast as testosterone and other AAS, meaning there is less risk of estrogen-induced side effects and liver damage.


However, it will be more detrimental on the HPT-axis (HPTA), meaning it will further reduce testosterone production.


Also, nandrolone has an anabolic/androgenic rating (a common way of rating AAS based on its anabolic and androgenic ability) of 125:37 (testosterone is 100:100 for reference).


Source: Wikipedia

What Are Deca Side Effects:


Even though deca durabolin doesn't convert to estrogen as much as testosterone, and converts to DHN instead of DHT, therefore having much less androgenic and estrogenic potential, and also is milder on the liver, it does have a much more significant effect on the progesterone system.


Therefore, the side effects of nandrolone can be more progesterone-induced or related to that of the AR.


The possible side effects of nandrolone vary from person to person and can be mild or severe and depend upon the amount of deca taken.


The side effects of deca durabolin can be severe.

Nandrolones side effects are listed below in approximate order of severity.


Deca Side Effects:


  • Acne.

  • Bladder Contractions Causing The Need To Urinate Often.

  • Breast Pain & Enlarged Breasts.

  • Virilism.

  • Altered Libido & Priapism (Prolonged Erection).

  • Chills.

  • Diarrhoea.

  • Insomnia.

  • Irritation Of The Stomach Or Intestines & Swelling Of The Abdomen.

  • Leg Cramps.

  • Cancer Of The Prostate Gland & Enlarged Prostate.

  • High Amount Of Calcium In The Blood.

  • Liver Damage & Problems.

  • Visible Water Retention.

  • Altered Menstrual Periods & Enlargement Of The Clitoris.

  • Darkening Or Yellowing Of The Skin & Eyes.

  • Decrease In Size Of Testicles & Inflammation Of The Epididymis Of The Testicles.

  • Decreased Appetite.

  • Feelings Of Hostility, Irritability, Low Energy, Depression, Over Excitement & Aggression.

  • Heart Attack & Heart Failure.

  • High Alanine Transaminase Level & High Aspartate Transaminase Level.

  • Stroke.

  • Blood Clot Formation.

  • Excessive Fat In The Blood.

  • High Amount Of Bilirubin In The Blood.

  • Inflammation Of The Liver With Stoppage Of Bile Flow.

  • Liver Cancer & Liver Tissue Death.

  • Low Sperm Count & Low Testosterone.

  • Microscopic Blood-Filled Cavities In The Liver


Overall deca durabolin has a slightly different set of common side effects than that of testosterone and other ASS, however with sufficient dosage it can show similar side effects and can actually be quite dangerous.


Source: WebMD

Is Deca Legal & Other Information:


This section provides information on the legality and culture of deca durabolin, detection in the body information, chemical information and more.


Legality & Availability:

AU: S4 (Prescription only)

CA: Schedule IV

UK: Class C

US: Schedule III


Nandrolone decanoate, along with most other AAS, is class C in the UK & a schedule III controlled substance in the United States under the Controlled Substances Act.;


Nandrolone is available widely throughout the world either by prescription or illegally, including in the United Kingdom and other European countries, Australia, New Zealand, Asia and elsewhere in the world, however it is increasingly becoming less available.


Detection In The Body:

Nandrolone is detectable in hair and in urine by testing for the presence of 19-norandrosterone, a metabolite of nandrolone. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has set an upper limit of 2.0 μg/L of 19-norandrosterone in urine, beyond this level an athlete is suspected of nandrolone usage.


Other Names:

Nandrolone decanoate has been marketed under these brand names: Deca-Durabolin, Deca-Durabol, Decaneurabol, Metadec and Retabolil.


Nandrolone decanoate is the generic name of the drug and its USAN and BAN and has also been referred to as nandrolone decylate.


It is also known throughout the underground world of bodybuilding and steroid use as Deca.


Duration of Action:

ND (IM): 2–3 weeks

NPP (IM): 5–7 days


Nandrolone will stay active within the body for many days or weeks depending on the ester being used.


Elimination Half-Life:

Nandrolone: <4.3 hours

ND (IM): 6–12 days

NPP: 2.7 days


Nandrolone will stay within the body for many days or weeks depending on the ester and amount being used and therefore may be detected many months after usage.



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