T Nation

Poliquin's Take on Tamoxifen


Hi Guys,

I dont post much but read and learn daily on the forum and respect those on here that have a greater understanding of this topic.

Just thought you might be interested in knowing Poliquin's take on Tamoxifen. Just finished the first day of his bio sig course here in London and he mentioned that Tamoxifen is the worst drug to use in PCT because it sends IGF levels into the toilet. He said never to use a SERM and in particular Tamoxifen but always use Arimidex. Just wanted to throw the cat among the pidgeons here as i know most of you go with Tamox for PCT. Any thoughts guys?

Leandog (London)


Adex is no good for pct!


Interesting Leandog. Thanks for taking the time. I hope you enjoy the rest of your Biosignature course. Always an honour to learn from a master. I respect Poliquin's opinions highly. I know Bill Roberts prefers an AI PCT for certain cycles. For some who get acne very bad, an AI PCT is recommended too. I wonder if anyone know more about the specific allegation:

"that Tamoxifen is the worst drug to use in PCT because it sends IGF levels into the toilet. He said never to use a SERM and in particular Tamoxifen but always use Arimidex."

edit: If that is you in your avatar, the calipers are not gonna have much skin fold to measure....


I am not real up to speed on this yet, I have read some things but far from enough.
theres things published from 1992 that I am reading about this.

My understanding is that the study was done on breast cancer patients,(on label recommendation of the drug)
it is a different dosing protocol and different duration.
it does lower igf-1 how much depends on how much and how long the drug is taken.
also after you stop taking it your levels go back up to the pretreatment levels, this was also in the study.
they tested the levels at 12 weeks and some were tested at 2 years of use @ 20MG a day
we never take it for that long.
and when they stopped they were back at normal igf levels within a couple days.

so heres my thing,oversimplistic and all

lets say a person was in a hormonal state for about 12 weeks that was very highly anabolic.
who cares if you have a minor drop for 4 weeks.

for a month you will have slightly dropping IGF levels, how low they will drop,hard to say but it wont be that much in 4 weeks. I mean honestly it wasnt that much after 12 weeks in these patients.
and when you get off a few days later your back to normal.
normal hormone levels across the board.(thats the goal anyways)

really with everything else going on I really dont see it as that important.
and if in doubt then add some IGF-1 to your pct.problem solved.
but really these tests were done on women and not done on males especially males that have the hormonal profile of an AAS user. so its really not quite accurate to say not to use it in PCT as thats not how it was tested.

EDIT: the levels that were "in the toilet" were I believe results taken after 2 years of use.

4 weeks is not going to send them "in the toilet"
again I could be mistaken I havent read much on it


All I recall on this is Dan Duchaine said this, back in the day, that he had got from extrapolation not actual results in bb'ing (whether outcomes or blood tests) and I had reasons why it was not so.

But he created quite a fear back then.

Funny thing was he created the fear only for Nolvadex. Clomid, which works the same way, hadn't had that reputation put on it, so no one feared using Clomid for gyno-protection during a cycle and no one noticed loss of gains.

After Duchaine's alarms about this faded away, people stopped fearing it and then, the psychological factor not being there, also did not notice supposed lost gains from Nolvadex during cycles.

It sounds as if Poliquin is reviving the same thing, but maybe with the twist of being outside of steroid cycles.

Same thing: results are not less off-cycle using SERMs.

Not every extrapolation works the way a person might happen to extrapolate that it "should."


Good post Maddy. Your points make a lot of sense. I can also add that my blood labs (which I shared with the forum) at the end of my last test e 6 weeker at 700mg/w had this 48 year old (in July for those who want to forward gifts) at a rather high IGF-1 level as Brook noted upon scanning them.

Although I would hope someone of Poliquin's intellect and mastery of research would be able to differentiate effects demonstrated in studies which do not apply to the context he used.


Thanks Bill that's reassuring. I know you have gauged results of every conceivable cycle scenario. So when you say results don't suffer that carries a lot of weight.


I'm sorry guys but if shit goes code red (side-effect wise) the first thing I'm going to reach for are my blister packs of generic Nolva and bolt down 60mg until it goes away and the AI is given time to do its work. Point taken, but I won't take his word for it.


Good post Leandog, but Im gonna be flat out honest hear.... This REALLY bothers me, Poliquin is one of the highest respected authorities in the strength and muscle business. People take his word as THE word. How in the shit is this point even debatable in 2009??? We still arent sure if Nolva is good or bad????

Im flat out shocked, this goes completely against every intelligent user Ive ever come across. I really feel that the Nolva discussion is far to elementary to even be a discussion. We get Newbs here all the time asking how they shoudld admin the nolva. They often wonder if they should inject nolva into their eyeball or perhaps use it as an AI and inject it into their temple. Seriously though 2+2=4 and Nolva used to= PCT.... I guess we are back to square one....


LOL! Chill - the world isnt ending mate!

I remember reading and hearing that SERM use reduced IGF levels - IIRC it was its activity in the Liver.

However, i also remember hearing/reading that the drop in IGF levels led to a drop in the gains the drug allowed on cycle - thus a fear when i first started using AAS that Tamoxifen was counter productive to gains.. however this wasnt the case - not for any SERMS (and yes, i only remember the 'fear' in relation to Tamoxifen, not Clomid).

I personally dont follow blindly what anyone says - if their opinion interests me, then i will look into it, but mostly i will decide for myself through personal experience.

I dont use SERMS much, very little if at all actually - i find an AI all i need day to day.

I am more interested in Poloquins work regarding training and exercise science, than his work involving PED and such.

Maybe it's just me.


for me, Im not going to worry about what he says.

I don't care if it lowers any type of hormone levels temporarily.my goal is to not grow titties and nolva does that job.


I want to be very limited in what I am saying here.

But maybe this illustrates that you have an underlying assumption or premise that should be re-examined. Both as a general matter and in a specific.

Let's just leave it at that.


I for one am not a fan of using a SERM for PCT...I have a blood test that back up my experience that they don't do shit (FOR ME) to restore LH/FSH levels. I know what the research says but my experience has been that it doesn't do shit for me except drop some water weight and make my chest look tighter. Personally I think using an AI makes a lot more sense. I do see a very big diffence from lowering my estrogen levels. We're all built different so to say what works for one will work for all is incorrect.

Adex is fine as an AI during PCT UNLESS you are combining it with Nolva...this is why Aromasin is recommended in conjunction with Nolva for PCT (because they don't interact like adex and nolva). Aromasin also automatically tapers (because more 2AR needs to be produced by the body) so it makes that part easier as well.


OK perhaps I overreacted, it was really late lol, as far as what Bill said, I have no idea what you were trying to get at, it was far too vague, I think it was intended to be negative tho, corect me if im wrong


Not negative to you personally but saying there is a wrong fundamental assumption in how the concern was arrived at. Both in the specific case and because that sort of assumption shouldn't be made generally.

For example, suppose I say that testosterone results in loss of gains.

That would be no reason for anyone to panic about testosterone. The thought about my statement should be different.

I really shouldn't have touched this one, beyond my initial post, so I would like to leave it at that, thanks.


Hi Guys,

Appreciate the responses. Anyone who has been taught anything by Poliquin will know that there is the right way, the wrong way and the Poliquin way. What he says goes...well thats what he thinks anyway. I personally have managed to keep good gains from the traditonal SERM PCT so i guess we can leave it at that. Dynamo Hum, yes its me in my avatar....i can assure you its good camera work and great lighting, and hard dieting of course. Cheers.



Just a question (since this is the 1st time I've read this): what interaction between arimidex and tamoxifen? Tamoxifen (like Clomiphen or Toremifene) will result in higher pulsatile frequency of GnRH and LH, the testes will produce more T (AND E depending upon the amount of aromatase in there and throughout the body), and the arimidex will compete with the aromatase to reduce conversion of T to E. Sounds like great interaction to me!

Maybe there is some other chemical interaction (i.e. they react with one another to produce an inert or dangerous compound) for the statement? I would love to know!

MY experience (and others who train and "experiment" with me): SERM + AI is fantastic for PCT. However, based on evidence from others who have low T naturally for one reason or another (not me, so this is based upon their experience), SERM + AI has been effective enough that they don't need T replacement. And yes...I particularly am only convinced when I have bloodwork evidence of which they have produced for me.

Now, these others' experiences have been with Clomid and Arimidex solely, NOT tamoxifen and arimidex....thus my curiousity here.


I have used nolva during pct and even on cycle...i have gone a few weeks off nolva, lowered doses and have been on 20mg/day, 10mg/day, 10mg eod and 10mg e3d day or none for a number of weeks...I notice ZERO muscle building differences on any different doses for any amount of time...so it must be to a VERY small degreee or maybe just doesnt effect my own bodys IGF enough to notice?

One thing i can say for sure is when i am not on the nolva during cycle...my testicles shrink alot more, when on 10mg nolva/day, i notice hardly any shrinkage...and its not just me my g/f agrees..BIZZARE.

I am guessing it must have to do with estrogens inhibbitry effect on the HPTA and nolva stopping it from binding and worsening the inhibbition of the AAS being used.

I did find this part of tamoxifen use very interesting and beneficial for me.