Clomid, or Clomiphene Citrate, is a SERM (selective estrogen receptor modulator), so it’s in the same grouping as tamoxifen (nolvadex). It is the most widely prescribed drug for ovulation induction, which is useful for those who are infertile. Studies have shown a pregnancy rate of 5.6% per cycle with clomid treatment vs 1.3% without. This makes clomid an inexpensive and excellent fertility drug for females.
Historically, clomid has been used since the 1960′s to help females with infrequent menstruation. Thereafter, its use expanded to include fertility issues in females. In 1989, a patent was awarded to Yale University medical researchers to predict fertility in women with the help of clomiphene citrate.
What is Clomiphene Citrate (Clomid)?
Male bodybuilders who cycle anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS) have found that the same mechanisms of increased LH (luteinizing hormone) can be taken advantage of to increase total testosterone levels. This is why clomid is popular in post cycle therapy (PCT) among those who cycle anabolic steroids. Since clomid has ability to bind to the estrogen receptors, much like nolvadex, in male users who run estrogenic compounds such as testosterone, dianabol, and deca durabolin, it can be used as gynecomastia treatment (anti-gyno). However, clomid is a fairly weak anti-gyno aid, and is rarely used for that purpose. Due to its ability to boost testosterone levels, it has been put on the WADA (world anti-doping agency) list of illegal doping agents in sport.
Clomiphene Citrate and Post Cycle Therapy (PCT)
When a steroid user runs a cycle their HPTA becomes suppressed; as a result, their bodies LH and FSH drop to almost zero (0) and their body stops producing testosterone. Their testicles typically will shrink as the body realizes there are too many hormones present and it’s not necessary to produce more. So, when you come off a cycle it’s important to run a PCT (post cycle therapy) to help recover the body’s HPTA.
Unlike HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin), clomid does NOT mimic LH in the body. As a result, it does not cause testosterone to rise, thus suppressing LH and FSH levels in the body. This is why clomid makes sense to use in pct and hcg does NOT. So how does it work?
Clomid stimulates the hypophysis to release more gonadotropins. Gonadotropins are protein hormones that are secreted by gonadotrope cells of the pituitary gland and stimulate faster and higher release of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). When an increase in gonadotropins happens, the rise in LH will spike up the total testosterone levels allowing the user to artificially maintain high testosterone levels until their own body is able to recover, thus maintaining gains.
Fig 1. HPTA – Male Reproductive System
Breaking all of this down into plain English, just imagine in your head the male’s reproduction system. You have the pituitary which controls the making of testosterone in the testis. Testosterone is made by leydig cells. The pituitary releases LH which is a hormone that stimulates the leydig cells to make testosterone. Testosterone is then converted to the female hormone estrogen and estrogen tells the pituitary to stop making more LH. When you introduce clomid into the mix, it blocks estrogen at the pituitary. Therefore, the pituitary sees less estrogen and makes more LH. More LH means the leydig cells in the testis make more testosterone. On the other hand, when a male injects hormones (like testosterone) the opposite happens. The pituitary thinks that the testis are making too much testosterone, so LH falls and the testis stop making testosterone. So, clomid does the job of manipulating and fooling the pituitary to produce more LH. That’s why clomid is so popular for pct.
So, why can’t I just use clomid to cycle instead of anabolic steroids?
Well the answer is simple, anabolic steroids are hormones and hormones are anabolic and androgenic. Clomid is neither, remember it’s a SERM. Therefore, cycling clomid to make gains from high testosterone levels (as some seem to think would work) makes no sense. Clomid should be used exclusively for post cycle therapy. If you run blood work, within three weeks of use, your LH and total testosterone should rise significantly.
Side Effects and Dosages
Side effects reported by users are limited, but the sides that do appear tend to be directly correlated to high dosages of the drug. In my experience, a dose of 50-100 mgs per day is enough to do the job. In fact, studies have shown a 150mg per day dosage of clomiphene citrate can increase testosterone levels by 150%. I have read some users going as high as 200mg or even 300mg a day. I believe this is not necessary based on my own blood work.
When used at higher dosages, over 200mgs per day, side effects may include feeling depressed or ‘bitchy’; anecdotally, some users report feeling very emotional (think PMS). When used at a proper dose and when stacked with PCT aids such as: HCGenerate, Cardarine (GW) and N2Guard, the user will rarely have any side effects. Many users experience a spike in libido, ejaculation volume, and well being during this period when clomid is used properly.
Bottom line is, clomid is a great option for post cycle therapy. If used properly, users will report very little side effects and many benefits.
Clomiphene Citrate half-life is around 5 to 7 days, so you can take an average 6 day half-life as a reference point.