Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators Tested for Purity and Composition

A study published in the medical journal JAMA reviewed the ingredients in nonsteroidal selective androgen receptor modulators used to enhance appearance and performance. Selective androgen receptor modulators have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The goal of the chemical analyses was to determine the quantity and types of ingredients in the products because the purity and the composition of the products were unknown. The authors found that over one-half of the products tested were inaccurately labeled.

What Were the Results?

The analyses of 44 products sold on the internet found that:

  • Only 52 percent of the products actually contained one or more selective androgen receptor modulators.
  • However, 39 percent of the products tested contained another drug that was unapproved.
  • In 25 percent of the cases, the products tested contained substances that were not listed on the product’s label.
  • 59 percent of the products contained substantial amounts that were different than the amounts shown on the product’s label.
  • Nine percent of the products tested did not contain any active substance.

Bottom line — Most of the products tested contained substances and drugs that were unapproved or had issues with the amounts of the substances in the product differing from the label.

What are Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators?

Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators (SARMs) are not legal ingredients for dietary supplements; however, there have been products containing SARMs sold as dietary supplements, according to the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. The use of SARMs by athletes was banned in 2008. Because of certain properties, it was determined that the substance could be misused to enhance sports performance.

While SARMs may have the potential to be useful as a treatment for some diseases, there are also several potential side effects, including liver damage, abnormal menstrual cycles in females, acne, abnormal hair growth on various parts of the body in females and shrinking of the testicles in males.

SARMs have not been approved for use by humans, yet they can be found online, and in brick and mortar stores. Consumers may not be aware of the issues with SARMs, including that the products containing these substances are not safe, are often mislabeled, and may be tainted.