T Nation

HCG Replacing Natural Levels of Testosterone


My experience with HCG has always led to increased sex drive, and fuller muscles/gains (During Deca and Proviron cycles using the old protocols of HCG, however). This is obviously due to the increased level of testosterone in the body when using some of the larger doses..

I was thinking, just now - for someone who wanted a leaner, non- test cycle, which IS necessary at some times, and desirable for many including older bodybuilders and weight class athletes - would the use of HCG not only be a benefit to recovery, but also supply that necessary level of testosterone to provide the DHT and even a little natural estrogen level - the missing components from these cycles?

I was thinking of using the now recommended 150iu 3x/wk protocol during a typical non-test cycle (Tren or deca only, Primo and Var etc.) ie. as the HCG would be used anyway for recovery purposes, and because any higher than 800-1000iu/wk of HCG, test may as well be used.

I know that the easy answer is to just use testosterone or proviron, but neither can help with recovery like the stimulation of the leydigs does (via HCG acting as LH), and if it is going to be used anyway, it could avoid the need for another suppressive drug, or one with undesirable sides being used (water, weight gain for example)

Or would the dose of HCG be too low to provide enough?
The times i have used the drug were years ago and in the 1500-3000iu range/E5D - so i would expect the libido increase and general testosterone benefits, but what about the 'new' doses of the drug?

I am interested to know exactly what kind of test increase is stimulated by the application of HCG, I know that as little as ~500iu per week is enough to stimulate enough testosterone to be secreted to avoid atrophy of the testes, but is it enough to provide enough of a DHT/estrogen level to run alongside non-DHT AAS that suppress natty levels but replace none of the necessary hormones.

I would have thought that just enough HCG to stimulate the level of testosterone that matches 'normal healthy male' levels (<~100mg/wk) ran during the cycle would be plenty for the goals mentioned (recovery, DHT and Estrogen) - and i am pretty sure it is around the lower doses of HCG (500-700iu/wk) rather than the higher doses (1500-5000/E5D) - simply because one 'feels' the higher doses.. this is a clear signal that the dose is much higher than the normal, natural level to me.

Does anyone know the proportionate levels of HCG->Test?

I personally think this would also be a good addition to trenbolone cycles, as it is suggested that tren causes the most problems when used alone due to lowered estrogen levels (both from no aromatisation and suppression) and the application of dbol is suggested to be a great addition for this reason, not only for for gains, but the libido and mood - often attributed to the lack of DHT... but recently suggested to be a lowered level of estrogen. A theory i have recently begun to believe is likely.

My experience of tren with test gave me a much greater sex drive than test alone, (350mg/700mg respectively) and i find it a wholly different drug in the terms of libido, and psychological effects than deca - with deca having activity at the progesterone receptor - having a knock on effect to progestin, and affecting the libido hard - more than suppression alone, as often a massively high test dose wont offset the libido drop (caber being needed to reduce the prolactin).
But tren, while having an affinity for the receptor - has little to no activity, and this feels correct to me personally... being sensitive to the increase of prolactin on sex drive.

Anyway, whether for the DHT or Estrogen or both, is this a possibility? I guess the only way to know is to give it a go..



I will be interested in hearing the outcome of this experiment. I am sure Bill would have some interesting input, but he is MIA.


Brook, some interesting thoughts there. Maybe a little too verbose for me right now, though. J/k… wake up brain.

So let’s agree that if you run hCG at 500IU/wk you’ll have at least close to normal levels of test. Graphs of E2 levels on hCG certainly jump up (raising the sub-issue of carefully dosing an AI while on this cycle… ensuring enough estrogen to keep you happy, but not enough for the nasty sides). I’ve never seen anything relating DHT levels, but presumably they would be proportionally elevated.

So whether that would be enough for you to feel anywhere near the way you did when you ran 350mg test alongside tren, I don’t know. My guess though is that 350mg test feels a lot different than the 100 or so mg test.

  • Wrt your question “[d]oes anyone know the proportionate levels of HCG->Test?” there isn’t an easy answer. For pre-pubertal kids, the relationship is a very strong one. For healthy adult males, the testis are already doing far more, and will thus reach their max production quite readily (please note that I’m ignoring the secondary, delayed response curve to hCG, which I don’t really understand). I’d be surprised if they could ever double their normal, “healthy” output. In fact, I think I’ve read an old (late '70s or early '80s) paper that had a max value of 150%.

Hopefully if you conduct this experiment you’ll be able to get some bloodwork done and contribute those results :slight_smile:


For guys on HCG monotherapy for TRT the standard dose is 1000iu-1500iu twice a week. That’s usually what’s needed to get decent T levels out of HCG. The maximum you can run without risking desensitizing the leydig cells is 6000iu a week. Guys that are running it as a standalone TRT find that the become MORE sensitive to HCG as time goes on and they are able to decrease the dose.


If HCG can be used to provide natural level of test/dht/estrogen. Then primobolan + HCG would be really nice healthy cycle for people looking a big of extra edge, while not have to worried about arrays of support drugs, bad lipid profile (from orals), sides associated with test only cycles. The only problem is probably hair loss.


Meph - You mentioned that the only side would be hair loss - but it would be no more hair loss than a natural, high/normal level of test would have given anyway… ie. no more hairloss than they would have gotten from their genetic pre-disposition to DHT activity at the scalp.

Also, i am sure that HCG can be used to provide the Test-> DHT and estrogen necessary, it is whether the levels are controllable enough alone really - if anyone knows any data measuring the testicular testosterone output in HPTA suppressed males injected with varying levels of HCG, THAT would be the final nail before testing IMO…

without knowing what dose of HCG gives what level - it would be shooting in the dark, requiring many blood tests, and i doubt my doctor would be up for that kind of human trial (although there are online testing kits)…

Brent - I am not talking about those on TRT who are suppressed and don’t care/aren’t aware about further suppression, or those prescribed by doctors who still use draconian dosing practices - getting the maximum ‘stimulation’ from the drug… but those interested in using HCG DURING a cycle, as a means to help recovery POST cycle of high AAS levels for short periods, bodybuilding style.

Whotook - I am not interested in the HCG providing the same results as a 350mg/wk Test level - as Test would be indicated in that case anyway, i am interested in using the HCG in a manner that would act as though the testes were NEVER suppressed whilst on a suppressive, non-test cycle - which often provides no estrogen and no DHT.

This is the reason we all recommend the inclusion of Test, Masteron or Proviron, but with HCG being recommended alongside for different reasons - even though it provides 5a-reductase and aromatase bound Testosterone!

Also, you mentioned the use of an AI - I don’t see the need… does one need an AI when one has never used a hormone, or has a high/normal level of test? It would of course be on hand, as it always should be (and always is in houses that contain serious AAS users), but the use of it shouldn’t be necessary as the level of testosterone should be no more than normal levels for someone say at 18-24 years old… the equivalent of 75-100mg of exo Test E6-8D, except this would be secreted semi-naturally by the testes.

Finally Whotook - you mentioned the declining efficiency of HCG given the output of the testes… granted, and that makes sense - it is a massive output for a pre-pubertal boy, and a lesser output for a healthy male - but what about a suppressed male? Is that similar to a pre-pubertal boy, or less due to reduced sensitivity of the legdigs?

I would like to know what dose of HCG is equivalent to what dose of Testosterone in a dormant HPTA system - whether Pre-pubertal or synthetically suppressed, i assume both figures would be similar at least…?

Plus i am not interested in doubling or even maxing output to 150% of ‘normal healthy’ - 85-100% would be fine, as this would give enough Test theoretically to live as a healthy, adult male would - but also be able to use suppressive, non-aromatising anabolics to achieve muscular gains not possible naturally… whilst promoting recovery post cycle, unlike Exogenous test would.



Don’t know the answers. Certainly can’t say that for someone 4 weeks into a tren cycle, they should be using X amount of hCG in order to stay on top of things, which is ultimately what you want to hear. I was attempting to cover some of the basic parameters of dosing - as I see them - in my previous reply, in the hopes of helping you navigate through things.

That said, I’d just run the hCG like you said though (500IU/wk) almost from the get go, to mirror the declining levels of endogenous test. Be prepared to bump it up within a relatively small range if necessary. Blood tests, atrophy, experience… you’ll have to determine the health of your boys.

The whole thing is the “dormant HPTA” state that you mention exists when you’re suppressed, but by maintaining your boys with hCG on-cycle, we have to consider it irrelevant here in terms of test production, at least not until PCT. If you fall too far behind on maintaining that production though, then you’ll need a much, much higher dose… into the 1000s, in order to kick start the leydigs. Needless to say, at those doses, you’ll be running an greatly increased risk of leydig desensitization, which would make things difficult post-cycle.

Sooooo, if you keep things active, maintenance dosing will remain much lower and you’ll take a lot of the guesswork out of the equation.

As for the AI, I was hesitant to mention it lol. I know that you like letro, which might be overkill in this scenario. Clearly your test levels wouldn’t be particularly high but from the hCG response curves that I’ve seen, it sure looks like hCG creates a very, very aromatization-friendly environment. Thus you’d have to expect estrogen to jump up after each shot of hCG. That’s about all I can say on it… I really wasn’t saying anything more than “use an AI as necessary… gently”… find that AI sweet spot to avoid sides.

All in all, it’s going to be a lot harder to run tren with hCG than with exog test, but it should be do-able. It won’t compare to running it with a higher dose of test, but it’ll be a modest improvement on a tren solo run.


Thanks - good stuff!


If you want your nuts running at 100% during a cycle inject 200-300iu every day (or 500iu every other day would be fine). You aren’t going to desensitize at that dose but you will have a little extra aromatase activity. A low dose of an AI would be a good idea.


[quote]brentf13 wrote:
If you want your nuts running at 100% during a cycle inject 200-300iu every day (or 500iu every other day would be fine). You aren’t going to desensitize at that dose but you will have a little extra aromatase activity. A low dose of an AI would be a good idea. [/quote]


Did you read the original post thoroughly?


[quote]BONEZ217 wrote:
brentf13 wrote:
If you want your nuts running at 100% during a cycle inject 200-300iu every day (or 500iu every other day would be fine). You aren’t going to desensitize at that dose but you will have a little extra aromatase activity. A low dose of an AI would be a good idea.


Did you read the original post thoroughly? [/quote]


Brent - That would be true at the dosages you suggested i suspect, and while they are not superdosing dosages, they are bigger than the usual protocols to keep the balls ticking over during a cycle to help in recovery - approx 600-750iu/wk (150iuEOD-100iuED-250iu3x/wk).
I was thinking of trying to emulate a NATURAL level of test - simulating the use of suppressive, non-test cycles without the suppression. Suppression IS enevitable, and we add test to some cycles just for the estrogen and DHT conversions - but what about the test provided by the HCG? That will aromatase and be ‘reduced’ to DHT - the two hormones that cause the most (side effects in high doses, as well as) psychological benefits in lower doses. That is, the equivalent dose of HCG to stimulate enough testosterone that would be identical to NOT being on cycle - even when one is.

It IS a big change in protocol, and it would be easiest tested by running 100mg test alongside the primo/tren/deca/winstrol/var etc… to see if that basic level of test (the level supposedly equivalent to the high/normal range of natty test production) provides ENOUGH DHT and Estrogen to offset the suppression of these hormones caused by the drugs mentioned.
Deca, would need caber to counter the prolactin as well - which is what i believe to be the only reason it is SO much more libido reducing in comparison to all other AAS, including Tren- which i now believe has no activity at the progesterone receptor although it has affinity. Not to say the suppression and low androgen component aren’t factors - but prolactin is a real love killer IME

Hope this clears up any misunderstandings - i write so much to really try to convey what goes through my messed up head as clearly as possible!




Bill Roberts has gone over the subject of using HCG in conjunction with non-aromatizing AAS in more than a few post. You can go through his old post to find them.

If you don’t want to do that, I think everything you need/want to know is in here:

It’s a good read, good luck!


I think I remember Bill talking about a Tren/Drol/HCG - 2 on 2 off cycle

It was something like 1-200mg/d tren + 100mg/d Drol + 200iu EOD HCG…you’d blast that for 2 weeks and then take 2 weeks off where you just take nolva, repeat…it was a while ago that I read the thread though so I am likely misquoting at least a few numbers.


[quote]W.H.B. wrote:

Bill Roberts has gone over the subject of using HCG in conjunction with non-aromatizing AAS in more than a few post. You can go through his old post to find them.

If you don’t want to do that, I think everything you need/want to know is in here:

It’s a good read, good luck! [/quote]

Thankyou very much - I had no idea BR had gone over this already!

I will read that, cheers.



[quote]W.H.B. wrote:

Bill Roberts has gone over the subject of using HCG in conjunction with non-aromatizing AAS in more than a few post. You can go through his old post to find them.

If you don’t want to do that, I think everything you need/want to know is in here:

It’s a good read, good luck! [/quote]

It is a very interesting read - and according to that study:

250iu HGC EOD is as effective as 500iu EOD in raising serum T levels above the normal range in suppressed*, healthy men supplemented with enough T to give a mid to high/normal range of Testosterone.

*The Suppression was caused by 200mg TE/wk over 3 weeks and the HCG applied EOD throughout. This dose of exo test gave a normal level of test in the men while suppressed over the 3 weeks of testing (if it went on for longer the levels would have climbed above the normal range it seems)

There were 4 groups - Placebo, 125iu HCG/EOD, 250iu HCG/EOD and 500iu HCG/EOD.
The placebo and 125iu EOD were virtually identical, and had no further increases in test levels. The 250iu and 500iu raised T levels above the normal range - and for the purposes of this thread, if the males were suppressed by a non-test compound, then 250iu EOD would be sufficient in increasing Test levels at least into the Normal range it seems.
If 500iu EOD is used, then not only does it give a lesser dose/benefit ratio than the 250iu dose - but will also likely lead to further aromatization, DHT and desensitization.

It also showed that if levels of HCG are tested 24hrs after administration, the levels will be high, yet if tested 48hrs after dosing, the levels will drop significantly - suggesting that ED injections ARE necessary for HCG when a stable blood level is necessary (as testosterone supplementation).

It may also be interesting to note that it mentions in previous studues, weekly administration of either 200 or 300 mg of Test will MAXIMALLY suppress gonadotropin secretion, and this suppression will occur within 2?3 d of administration!

It seems to me after reading that study, that ~125iu HCG used ED is quite capable of supplying enough Testosterone to help with non-test sides from suppressive non-test cycles.

ALSO, in partial response to some earlier posts, HCG at a dose of ~125iu ED - while suppressed by non-aromatizing hormones - that further aromatase inhibition should not be necessary.

It has also occured to me that this study paves the way for the idea of HCG being used to ‘supply’ the testosterone at physiological levels, during a Stasis/Taper period - daily injections from 100iu/d down, should do the same job as exo test - but using the testes to produce the hormone rather than continuing to inject exogenous test. Alongside SERM use this seems like a viable option and one i have wanted to look further into for some time.

Thankyou WHB so much for posting that study.



Good community effort here. Figures that Bill would have addressed it earlier.

I’ve seen this paper before and the authors hit the nail on the head when they distinguish those that are hypogonadotropic due to exogenous T from those suffering due to standard infertility issues.

It strikes me as odd that the authors didn’t bother to at least assay estrogen levels, though. It would have been simple enough to do, rather than just gently touch on it in a conclusory manner. Again, as I said a couple of days ago, I only reluctantly mentioned the AI issue to begin with, knowing that you want decent estrogen levels here, and that you use letro… a blood test a couple of weeks in would be most informative :wink:


Wouldnt an HcG stasis just lead to desensitizing the leydig cells, making recovery harder in the long run?


Since the study shows that gonadotropin is maximally supressed in a couple of days. I think it is wise to start HCG as soon as you start any long cycle. Instead of starting HCG @ week3, the nads would be out of action by then, and possibly atrophied already.


test 1-8
hcg 1-10
serm 11-14
HCG usage is continued in week 9 and 10, while exo test level drop down to non supressive levels. Then SERM pct would commence. HCG would be stop when SERM is used, to allow FSH, LH etc to return to normal. So that true endo test production can resume.

For longer cycles (20+ weeks), some people have noticed gradually diminishing effect from HCG, and suggested to take 4 weeks break from HCG during mid cycle, to allow resensitisation. Since HCG is a foreign drug, the body will build up resistance regardless of dosage?! I think it is a reasonable assumption.

Also if HCG stasis/taper method is used for longer cycles, would LH, FSH restoration be affected in anyway? Since your testis got used to produce testosterone via artificially induced stimulation.

I guess the best way to find out is to do a cycle, with some blood tests to monitor the progress.
e.g 8 weeks Deca only + HCG + SERM pct
or 12 weeks Deca only + HCG stasis taper + SERM


[quote]soontobeIFBB wrote:
Wouldnt an HcG stasis just lead to desensitizing the leydig cells, making recovery harder in the long run? [/quote]

I dont see why that would occur at the dosages i was talking about…



Those who test this out, please keep us posted…