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Oxandrolone can reverse effects of muscle disease

Hold on a moment. Who said anabolic steroids no longer have any medical uses? You? Well, that means lines for you young man. "According to Italian neurologists, oxandrolone is an anabolic steroid that can help in the treatment of the muscle disease Charcot-Marie-Tooth." Write out a thousand times and hand it in tomorrow.

Charcot-Marie-Tooth is a hereditary muscle disease which is a little like Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The difference between the two is that Charcot-Marie-Tooth affects the nerve pathways that connect the brain to the rest of the body. As people with this disease age their control of movement in their arms and legs starts to falter.

In MS it is the cells in the brain and spinal column that are affected. MS is a more aggressive disease than Charcot-Marie-Tooth. People with MS have a life expectancy that is five to ten years shorter than healthy people; Charcot-Marie-Tooth does not decrease life expectancy.

In both Charcot-Marie-Tooth and MS the myelin sheath that surrounds the nerves withers. Nerve pathways are made up of axons: the long strands of specialised cells, which can be up to tens of centimetres long. Myelin is a fatty substance that protects the axons.

Oxandrolone can reverse effects of muscle disease

There are different forms of Charcot-Marie-Tooth. The subject that the Italians used, a 25-year-old man, had CMT-1. The researchers described his state as "a severe demyelinating neuropathy presented with spastic tetraparesis, muscle weakness, spasticity, and instability during deambulation."

Case study
Oxandrolone can reverse effects of muscle disease
The Italians got the man to do supervised weight training for a period of three months. He trained all the big muscle groups, doing two sets of basic exercises. The rep-range was low: 6-8 reps. People with muscle diseases cannot do large numbers of reps.

The man took 20 mg oxandrolone daily [structural formula shown on the right]. In addition he was given an injection of 2000 units hCG every two weeks. This was intended to maintain his own testosterone synthesis.

The combination of strength training, oxandrolone and hCG resulted in the man gaining 5 kg lean body mass. The patient gained muscle strength and started to walk more easily.

Oxandrolone can reverse effects of muscle disease

The speed at which the muscles transmitted signals to the muscles increased by 9 percent; the strength of the signals travelling from the brain to the muscles increased by 10 percent.

At the end of the oxandrolone and hCG course, the researchers noticed that strong type-2 muscle fibres had started to cluster in the subject's muscle tissue. The Italians regard that as "an expression of regeneration and reinnervation processes".

Oxandrolone can reverse effects of muscle disease

Test-tube and animal studies have shown that androgens induce the growth of Schwann cells. [Horm Behav, 2008; 53(5): 716-28.] These are the cells that form the myelin sheath around axons. The Italians suspect that the combination of training, oxandrolone and hCG also repaired damage to the myelin layer.

Oxandrolone can reverse effects of muscle disease

"In the patient of this case report, treatment with oxandrolone added to exercise improves neuromuscular function, likely as a consequence of reinnervation of the muscle, as evidenced by type-grouping and recovery of motoneuron function", the researchers wrote.

"This observation suggests that treatment with oxandrolone may be useful to restore functional axon and motoneuron efficiency and could be considered within rehabilitation programs in patients with neuromuscular damages, such as demyelinating diseases, hereditary neuropathy, aging, and after peripheral injury."

The researchers' confidence in androgen therapy seems also to be confirmed by the experiences of other patients which they describe in the conclusion of their article. "We have treated other patients with similar diseases and paraplegic subjects after spinal cord injury and in our experience, all patients benefit from androgen therapy."

"The aim of this study is to increase the interest to other authors in further research because studies in this field are clearly warranted and useful for clinical practice", the researchers concluded.

Am J Case Rep 2015; 16:763-767.

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