Anadrol is an orally active C-17 alpha alkylated anabolic steroid, and as such, it exhibits hepatotoxicity and negative effects where the liver is concerned. Anadrol is, in fact, the worst offender for this among all commercially available anabolic steroids. It is likely very possible that this has been over-exaggerated among the bodybuilding community, but it should nevertheless be taken very seriously. Interestingly enough, Anadrol possesses a chemical modification that is actually supposed to reduce hepatotoxicity. The reality, however, is that Anadrol still raises liver enzyme markers during use as demonstrated in studies with HIV and AIDS patients. It is therefore highly advised to limit Adrol to cycle lengths of no greater than 4 – 6 weeks of use, and to supplement with plenty of proven liver support compounds.
Things become stranger with Anadrol when other side effects are investigated. It is well-known that Anadrol is a DHT (Dihydroteststerone) derivative, and therefore does not convert into Estrogen. However, Estrogenic side effects are known to be notoriously prominent with Anadrol, producing side effects such as bloating and water retention (often reported as extreme) with concomitant increases in blood pressure, and the development of gynecomastia. The use of a SERM (such as Nolvadex) will mitigate gynecomastia, but will not solve water retention (and resultant blood pressure) issues. Aromatase inhibitors will not work with Anadrol, as it has no interaction with the aromatase enzyme to begin with. Although it is speculated that Anadrol may act as a Progestin causing these side effects, studies have demonstrated that Anadrol does not hold any Progestogenic properties. The most likely (though yet unconfirmed) explanation would be that Anadrol may possibly interact with the Estrogen receptor directly, or that a metabolite of Anadrol might possibly do this as well.
The evidence of strange metabolites of Anadrol becomes even stronger when other Anadrol side effects are investigated. For example, in terms of androgenic side effects, they tend to be fairly reduced in comparison with Testosterone. However, Anadrol does not convert into DHT and instead is metabolized into 17-alpha-methyl dihydrotestosterone (Mestanolone). Mestanolone is a stronger androgen, and therefore some degree of androgenic side effects can be expected from Anadrol (such as oily skin, acne, male pattern baldness, benign prostatic hyperplasia, etc.).
Lastly, as with all oral anabolic steroids, Anadrol tends to impact the cardiovascular system negatively in an extreme manner, producing vast alterations in blood cholesterol profiles (for both LDL and HDL).