Q: “How should HCG be used in post-cycle therapy (PCT)?”
A: Ideally, HCG should not be used at all in PCT. For steroid cycles, HCG really should only be used in PCT if a mistake has been made which needs a correction.
When it’s used in PCT, the purpose is to correct testicular non-responsiveness or atrophy which has developed during a cycle. The longer the cycle, the more likely there will be a problem, and the worse the problem is likely to be.
When non-responsiveness occurs, then even after LH production is recovered the testes still do not produce testosterone in good amounts, and overall recovery is quite delayed. Losses from this steroid side effect can be severe.
A total HCG use of 5000-10,000 IU over a period of about 4-8 weeks can restore responsiveness.
It’s a poor and unnecessary plan to allow the testes to atrophy by starting HCG after the steroid cycle ends. It’s better to avoid atrophy and non-responsiveness from occurring in the first place. Further, HCG use during post-cycle therapy can impair recovery of LH production. So it’s not at all the ideal time to use it.
Instead, HCG should be used in the middle or late part of the cycle, and no later than the last steroid injection of the cycle.
The period of HCG use will typically be about 4 weeks. In an 8-12 week cycle, the 4 weeks (approximately) of use would be immediately prior to the last steroid injection. In a 14 week cycle, the about 4-week period should be in the late-middle part of the cycle. Examples would be using HCG in weeks 6-9, in weeks 9-12, or anywhere in-between.
The dosing is divided into at least 3 times per week. For example, 275 IU 3x/week provides 5000 IU over four weeks. But dosing could be daily, every other day, or 4x/week, as examples. There is little or no practical difference in results among these different schedules. It’s a matter of personal preference.
The total amount taken per week doesn’t need to be any exact figure. For example it also would be fine to take 500 IU three times per week or to take 200 IU daily.
Taking more than 1250 IU per week result in a 5000 IU vial lasting less than four weeks. For example, at 500 IU 3x/week, a vial lasts just over 3 weeks. This is acceptably close to 4 weeks, and ordinarily with this schedule a single vial still suffices. Much higher dosing than this gives no further results per week, and gives less results per vial.
When HCG is used according to this method, the side effects of testicular atrophy and loss of responsiveness are avoided, and recovery is complete as soon as LH production is restored. There’s then no need for PCT use of HCG, and recovery is faster as a result.
It’s worth mentioning also that in some cases, it will be better to use HCG throughout the steroid cycle rather than using it for only a 4 week period. One case is where the cycle uses only non-aromatizable steroids, such as Masteron, Primobolan, trenbolone, Anadrol, or oxandrolone. Estradiol levels drop undesirably low during non-aromatizing cycles, because testosterone levels drop very low and estradiol is produced principally from testosterone. By maintaining normal testosterone levels, HCG used throughout the cycle will also maintain sufficient estradiol levels.
Another case where it can be desirable to use HCG throughout the period of steroid use is where the user is not cycling at all, but using steroids chronically with no break.