Blood Testing for PED use – Why, When and How

The notion of blood testing is not a particularly new one, but due to the difficulty of convincing a general practitioner you want or need a series of specific tests for performance enhancement is usually enough for them to deny you on the spot. Their rational is that you don’t need the use of exogenous hormones for any health reason (and that’s true if your levels are normal). The use of PEDs comes with some degree of inherent health risk (which is also ultimately true). Beyond that, the minute a practitioner agrees to test you they are putting their name to a diagnostic report that they have to follow up on if the levels are out, and frankly they will not want that sort of responsibility.

Finally it often makes them somewhat complicit in aiding what is essentially an illegal act. AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency) which is the governing regulatory body for GPs takes a very conservative view of performance enhancement, and the practitioner can lose their registration or be sanctioned if they are seen as being even slightly complicit in PED use. Accordingly this is why GPs are reluctant to engage in performance enhancement blood testing.

Sure you can get a test as part of a physical check up, or for any number of legitimate health reasons. You may have to use that avenue to get a test, but repeated tests, and tests where hormone levels are exaggerated are likely to lead to the obvious diagnostic conclusion, and then you will probably have to come clean and have an uncomfortable discussion with your doctor. 

Some practitioners will support you. Others have the right not to. It’s up to you to negotiate these boundaries, or alternatively pay for private pathology (such as, if you want the data. 

Essential Testing Regime 

Testing at three points during a PED regime gives the greatest analytical data snapshot to assess how you individually respond. It lets you fine tune dosages. It quickly assesses side effects and allows for possible treatment if required. It builds a collection of data over time to allow you to get the most from PEDs. 

The three periodic tests are timed as follows. 

(1)  Pre-commencement

This allows for baseline readings. This is what your normal is. This is ideally what we hope to return to once PED use is done.

The tests should include as a baseline minimum:

– FBE (Full Blood Examination) Biochemistry and Haematology
– Hormones : Total Testosterone, Free Testosterone, SHBG, FSH, LH, Prolactin, (Prostesterone – Optional)
– hGH (if planning to use this in your enhancement program)
– Liver Enzymes (Liver Function Test, aka LFT)
– Kidney Function Test (UEC)
– Fasting Lipids (Total Cholesterol, LDL, HDL, Triglycerides)
– Fasting Blood Glucose
– C Reactive Protein

It would be desirable to include (where possible):

– Vitamin D levels (once a year at least, usually winter)
– Thyroid Function Panel (T3/T4/TSH) (once a year at least)
– Iron Studies (at least once to establish base line, then optional at start) 

(2)  Peak Cycle (usually 8-10 weeks into your design) 

Testing at this point assesses critical points such as how did the PEDs used affect the hormone levels (if there was no change, chances are the substances you purchased were fake). We also look at any toxicity level events, have we adversely affected the liver or kidneys. In most events any damage is usually minor and reversible, however, it can also be cumulative. Often it is better to treat with nutrient support methods immediately than to let the numbers climb and get out of hand. These tests determine the most appropriate and cost effective way to do so. We also look at the effect that high hormones had on the endocrine system. Did aromatisation occur? How can we fix that if needed? It also gives us an advance indication if PCT will need to be employed, and which protocol to use.  

The testing should include:

– FBE (Full Blood Examination)
– Hormones: Total Testosterone, Free Testosterone, SHBG,
– Estrogen (E2)
– FSH & LH
– Prolactin
– Liver Enzymes (Liver Function) & Kidney Function (UEC)
– Fasting Lipids (Total Cholesterol, LDL, HDL, Triglycerides)
– Fasting Glucose
– C Reactive Protein
– Iron Studies (optional)
– Thyroid Panel (only if T3 is part of your design) 

(3)  Crash Point

The crash point is literally that, and it is timed for after the PEDs have left the system. This is not an arbitrary two weeks after your last pin event but should be timed to be 4-5 half lives of the longest acting PED in your cycle. There is no point in starting a PCT (post cycle therapy) program when there are appreciable levels of elevated hormones in the system. PCT simply will not work in such an environment.

PCT is all about encouraging your body to go back to normal production of its own hormones. If there are still PEDs overloading those systems, then the body’s own feedback mechanisms will simply not respond to the PCT medications in any meaningful way. (i.e., the body thinks there is no need to go back to normal hormone production as there are still high levels in the system).

Crash point testing must include, at an absolute minimum:

– FBE (Full Blood Examination) Biochemistry and Haematology.
– Hormones: Total Testosterone, Free Testosterone, SHBG,
– Estrogen (E2)
– FSH & LH
– Prolactin 
– Liver Enzymes (Liver Function) Kidney Function (UEC)
– Fasting Lipids (Total Cholesterol, LDL, HDL, Triglycerides)
– C Reactive Protein

For more information please get in touch with us at PED Test Australia.