Note: Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators (SARMs) are not approved by any drug or medical authority, anywhere in the world. The risks are still too high.
A considerable amount of the discourse surrounding Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators (SARMs) is centered on performance enhancement for professional and amateur athletes. However, there is much more to be learned about one of the most talked-about “muscle drugs” in the world this century.
In this article, we explore SARMs applications in greater detail, while also trying to determine their future in healthcare.
What Do SARMs Do For Your Body?
SARMs are designed to help enhance the physical functionality of your body, while also improving muscle and bone health. These outcomes are achieved through tissue-specific gene regulation.
SARMs Use For Hypogonadism
There is increasingly compelling evidence that SARMs can effectively treat hypogonadism in men. The diminished production of sex hormones is a common occurrence in older men, but can also be quite crippling for younger adult men too. Ongoing clinical trials reveal that this can be treated to varying degrees, without being exposed to damaging side effects.
SARMs Use For Osteopenia
SARMs are of particular interest to professional athletes and bodybuilders because there is compelling evidence that they can help you increase muscle and bone mass (fat-free mass). However, there is actually a little more substance to this.
Osteopenia is more commonly known as “low bone mass” or “low bone density”. People who suffer from it, especially the elderly, have an increased risk of falls, fractures and bone breakage due to low muscle strength and bone mass. Studies show that SARMs can help reduce fractures and the pain that invariably come with those.
SARMs Use For Sarcopenia
Where osteopenia has more to do with bone mass and bone density, sarcopenia has more to do with muscle loss. It is a condition most likely to affect the elderly and the immobile. However, it is not limited to those two demographics.
While there is some ambiguity about what would constitute a muscle waste disorder, and how to measure the effect of treatment, scientists are convinced there is potential for SARMs to successfully treat muscle waste and frailty. Evidence states that SARMs help increase lean muscle mass and physical function in elderly men and women.
SARMs Use For Cachexia
Cachexia is a very complicated and traumatic cancer-related condition. It is accompanied by ongoing muscle loss, which can never be fully recovered. The condition has also been linked to diseases like congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, chronic kidney disease, and AIDS.
As seen in cancer and AIDS, finding suitable answers to the cachexia problem is far more complicated for doctors and patients alike. However, some meaningful progress is being made as scientists try to overcome the resistance to SARMs therapy for cachexia patients.
What Are Examples Of SARMs?
There isn’t a single SARMs drug that has been approved for human consumption by the FDA. The FDA has even issued a stern warning against taking the drug, for any reason, especially if you are a professional athlete or bodybuilder.
There are many SARMs that are being taken through a series of medical testing phases. Certain SARMs drugs are in the clinical testing phase, many of which are still in the pre-clinical phase, and some have been abandoned altogether. We are going to deal with the drugs that you are most likely already have access to, through some means or the other.
Enobosarm is a drug of interest for patients suffering from osteoporosis, andropause, sarcopenia, and cachexia. While the potential for treatment with all of those afflictions is still under investigation, there is nothing conclusive yet.
This SARMs drug is also known as GTx-024 MK-2866, Ostarine, and S-22. The drug itself is taken in through the mouth, which makes it such a compelling option, even for those who aren’t taking it for the right reasons. The elimination half-life for Enobosarm is about 24 hours.
BMS-564,929 is a drug of interest for people suffering from issues related to muscle growth, and andropause. This is an investigational drug that has not been approved by any medical body. This drug is associated with several harmful side effects which are yet to be overcome in the study. Some of these side effects include hepatotoxicity, suppression of luteinizing hormone levels, benign prostatic hypertrophy, prostate cancer, acne, and hirsutism.
This drug is also commonly known as VK5211 and LGD-4033. It is an oral investigational drug of interest for people suffering from muscle waste and osteoporosis. At the coalface of this drug’s studies are major companies like Ligand Pharmaceuticals and Viking Therapeutics, which helps lend some weight to have it approved.
Ligandrol is the drug that has attracted the most attention from anti-doping authorities, who are finding it in professional athletes and even horses. While performance enhancement is a concern, the major issue is the risk to an athlete’s health. At some point, somebody will need to be held accountable for anything that goes wrong.
The Final Verdict
There is considerable hype around consuming SARMs, especially in the body-building community. While it would be prudent to avoid the hype because of the associated risks, the developments will still be of interest to people who have genuine medical afflictions.