Andriol History and Overview
Andriol, which is the brand name and trade name for Testosterone Undecanoate, is an oral Testosterone product. It is oil-based and manufactured in the form of gel capsules. It is vastly different from other oral anabolic steroids in a few different ways. First and foremost, other oral anabolic steroid products are almost always C-17 alpha alkylated (also known as methylation). This is a process whereby a methyl group is affixed to the 17th carbon on the Testosterone (or other anabolic steroid) compound, which allows the hormone to survive the first pass through the liver, thereby allowing it to be orally bioavailable so that the user can use it orally. The downside to this modification is that C-17 alpha alkylation almost always presents a degree of liver toxicity (hepatotoxicity) and strain, thereby limiting the length of use and/or maximum dosage. Andriol does not possess C-17 alpha alkylation despite it being an orally active form of Testosterone.
Instead, Andriol is an esterified form of Testosterone (Testosterone Undecanoate), whereby it is affixed to an extremely long fatty acid chain ester. Research has demonstrated that when Andriol is consumed (especially in the presence of dietary fats), the high lipophilic nature of it allows at least partial absorption via the body’s lymphatic system through the gastrointestinal tract. Although Andriol is not liver toxic at all, there are some disadvantages to its nature. Because it relies on fat solubility to be absorbed in the body, research has shown that Androl’s oral bioavailability is around 7%.
Andriol was originally developed and pioneered by the pharmaceutical manufacturer Organon in the early 1980s. In addition to its brand name Andriol, it was also branded under the names Virigen, Undestor, Restandol, Panteston, and Androxon in various regions and countries throughout the world. Its intended use was that of a Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) drug for men that manufacture inadequate levels of natural Testosterone. Despite this fact, Andriol is still not approved on the prescription drug market in the United States, but it is available in Canada and Mexico. Andriol is intended to be a TRT alternative to Testosterone injections (such as Testosterone Enanthate or Testosterone Cypionate), and thereby act as a much more convenient form of administration for some that may not prefer injections.
Originally, Andriol had to be kept under refrigeration when in storage. Thankfully, in the early 2000s, Organon formulated a new Androl product, known as Andriol Testocaps, which allowed the drug to be maintained at room temperature without any degradation of product. Individuals should keep in mind, however, that at room temperature, Andriol Testocaps hold a shelf-life of about 3 years (as opposed to the old Andriol shelf-life of 3 months). Andriol gel capsules are concentrated at a dosage of 40mg per gel cap.
Andriol’s availability is pretty widespread, but its use among athletes and bodybuilders is very far and few in between. This is due to the fact that Andriol’s disadvantage is that of very poor and very low oral bioavailability combined with a relatively high cost for this compound. Bodybuilders and athletes have therefore always opted for the more dependable, cheaper, and easily-accessible injectable Testosterone products and formulations that provide far higher (near-100%) bioavailability.
Andriol is designed to exhibit a peak Testosterone level in the body only a few hours after ingestion, and after repeated dosing over the first couple of weeks, steady and stable peak blood plasma concentrations should be maintained for 24 hours after each administration.
Andriol Chemical Characteristics
As previously mentioned, Andriol is merely an esterified variant of Testosterone, whereby Testosterone has been affixed with the Undecanoate ester at the 17-beta hydroxyl group. It is vastly different from all other oral anabolic steroids because it does not contain methylation (C-17 alpha alkylation) on the 17th carbon, and therefore does not exhibit any of the negative effects on the liver that C-17 alpha alkylated compounds do. It also does not exhibit the same method of absorption and avoidance of the first pass of the liver that C-17 alpha alkylated oral compounds do. Instead, because of Andriol’s very long-chain fatty acid ester, it is extremely lipophilic and enters the body via the lymphatic system through the GI tract.
Andriol Side Effects
Being that Andriol is a Testosterone product, it does carry with it all of the major side effects of Testosterone in general.
Estrogenic side effects are the first in particular to usually affect the user. Testosterone undergoes a moderate rate of aromatization (conversion) into Estrogen in the body via interaction with the aromatase enzyme. This means that blood plasma levels of Estrogen can and do build up with the use of Andriol, and Estrogenic side effects can result. Estrogenic side effects include: retention and/or gain of body fat, bloating and water retention, heightened blood pressure (as a result of water retention), and the potential for developing gynecomastia (breast tissue). It is recommended that individuals using Andriol look into the possibility of using some form of anti-estrogen during a cycle, or at the very least have anti-estrogens on hand in the event that Estrogenic side effects become prominent.
The next major Andriol side effects include androgenic side effects. These are masculinizing and male secondary sex characteristic related side effects. Being that Andriol is Testosterone, and Testosterone is the primary male androgen, it has direct influence on androgenic side effects. Furthermore, the high androgenicity of Testosterone products is more attributable to its reduction (or conversion) into Dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which is a far more potent androgen than Testosterone itself. In this case, the use of a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor can mitigate androgenic side effects by way of preventing or reducing the conversion of Testosterone into DHT. Androgenic side effects include: increases in aggression, increased body hair growth, increased oily skin secretions, deepening of the voice, and possible male pattern baldness (MPB) in those men that are genetically predisposed to it.
Testosterone, like any and all other anabolic steroids, can and will suppress natural endogenous Testosterone production. Testosterone suppression is a very real fact of anabolic steroid use, which is why it is important to limit cycle lengths and engage in proper Post Cycle Therapy (PCT) protocol following the termination of an anabolic steroid cycle. Failure to do so can potentially result in permanent Testosterone suppression for life.
Negative cardiovascular effects are also a concern. Research has shown that while Testosterone used in therapeutic dosages for the treatment of TRT in men are unlikely to increase the risk of cardiovascular problems (and might even possibly improve cholesterol profiles), the use of Testosterone at performance enhancing dosages does result in a decrease of HDL (the ‘good’ cholesterol). Furthermore, when combined with aromatase inhibitors, research and studies have shown that the negative effects on the cardiovascular system increase by a dramatic degree.
Andriol, due to its vastly different mechanism of action compared to C-17 alpha alkylated oral anabolic steroids, presents absolutely no hepatotoxic effects. For example, one study analyzed Andriol’s potential for liver toxicity by attempting high dosages on test subjects (400mg daily) for 20 days, and Andriol generated no notable changes in liver enzyme readings during the study. This also includes patients who have been administered the drug in the long-term (a decade or longer).
Dosing and Administration of Andriol
Medically, Andriol dosages are prescribed in the range of 120 – 160 mg per day for the first 2 to 3 weeks. Following this initial period, prescription guidelines call for a reduction of Andriol dosage to a maintenance schedule of 40 – 120mg per day.
For performance and physique enhancement, the Andriol dosage must understandably be far greater. A minimum of 250mg per day is required (6 or 7 capsules) to see any measurable effect, and many individuals claim that the results at this range are on the low end. Commonly, Andriol is used at a dosage of 400 – 500 (10 – 14 capsules) per day. Advanced or experienced users may require even higher dosages than that.
Due to the lipophilic nature of Andriol’s pharmacology, it is recommended that Andriol dosages be administered with the consumption of food / meals, ideally with a higher fat content in order to maximize its absorption in the body through the lymphatic system. When taken on an empty stomach, studies have demonstrated extremely low absorption and bioavailability of Andriol. Andriol dosages should also be split into two evenly spaced dosages (e.g. morning and evening) in order to maintain steady and stable blood serum levels of Testosterone.
Andriol Cycles and Uses
Andriol cycles should generally follow the same guidelines as cycles of any other Testosterone products, though Andriol may have to be dosed higher due to its poor bioavailability. It can be used on its own in a solitary cycle, or used as a base Testosterone compound while other anabolic steroids are used. Cycle lengths of Andriol can range from 8 weeks to 12 weeks or more. As stated earlier, it is not a very popular Testosterone product for the purpose of performance or physique enhancement among bodybuilders and athletes, and it is very rare to come across much information in regards to Andriol cycles.
Beginners may be tempted to opt for Andriol due to its convenience as an oral Testosterone product, but even this is a rare occurrence. Beginner Andriol cycles would usually involve Andriol dosed at 300mg per day for 8 – 12 weeks.
If any experienced athletes do elect to use Andriol, they usually run Andriol cycles that involve a low TRT dosage of Andriol in the background for mere support of essential bodily function, while other stronger anabolic steroids are utilized as the workhorse compounds of the cycle. These can include compounds such as Winstrol (Stanozolol), Nandrolone (Deca-Durabolin), Trenbolone, or Anavar (Oxandrolone).
USA: In the United States, Andriol is classified as a Schedule III drug in the Controlled Substances Act whereby possession and use of Andriol or any Testosterone product without a valid prescription would be considered a felony. Needless to say, trafficking, importation, and the purchase of Andriol or any anabolic steroid is a criminal act.
UK/England: In the United Kingdom, Andriol falls under Schedule IV, whereby possession and use of Andriol without a physician’s prescription is legal for personal use. Importation of Andriol for personal use without a prescription is also not a felony.
Canada: In Canada, a similar law to that of the UK runs true where it is a Schedule IV drug, and as such, possession and use of Andriol for personal use without a valid physician’s prescription is not a felony and is legal. However, trafficking of the substance is a felony.
These are 3 examples of the current state of laws under which Andriol falls into within 3 major countries in the world. Whichever route one decides to acquire Andriol through, he or she must be aware of the legality and laws surrounding it in whichever country the person resides. It is important to research beforehand in order to make the appropriate decisions and what to expect. Ignorance of the law is no excuse.
How to Buy Andriol
Although Andriol is not extremely common or popular among athletes and bodybuilders due to its limitations in bioavailability as well as its cost, it is a common product on the market. One particular benefit to buying Andriol is that because the product formulation is very difficult to copy, fake and counterfeit Andriol is not usually an issue. Similarly, there exist no underground lab (UGL) formulations of Andriol either, and so the only available Andriol product to buy on the market is the original pharmaceutical grade Organon product.
Identification of legitimate Andriol is still very important, however, and those looking to buy Andriol should watch for brown and/or red colored capsules if looking at the older (pre-2003) product. The new and current Andriol Testocaps are an oval shaped glossy-looking gelatin capsule, containing an orange gel that looks more like a yellowish oil. The markings DV3 and ORG should be visible on the surface of both the old Andriol as well as the new and current Andriol Testocaps.
Andriol runs an average of about $2.00 per capsule (40mg capsules) if the individual is looking to buy the actual Organon product from Greece. A blister pack box of 30 capsules is therefore usually around $60. The Organon India product can be bought for cheaper, at around $1.00 per capsule (40mg capsules), which brings a box of 30 to $30. As one can see, Andriol tends to be quite an expensive product even if the cheaper Indian Organon product is sought after. Anyone can easily see how at a typical dosage of 400mg per day (10 capsules) can run an individual upwards of $700 for a 10 week cycle at that dosage, which is considered a low to moderate end dosage for a product such as Andriol.
- Testosterone + Undecanoate ester
- Formula: C19 H28 O2
- Molecular Weight (base): 288.429
- Molecular Weight (ester): 186.2936
- Manufacturer: Schering AG
- Effective Dose (Men): 40-120mg per day
- Effective Dose (Women): Not suggested
- Half-Life: Approx. 6-9 hours
- Detection Time: Approx. 2-3 months
- Anabolic /Androgenic Ratio: 100:100