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March 1965

Muscular Dystrophy: XI. Trials of 1-Methyl-?1-Androstenolone and Digitoxin

Author Affiliations


From the Section of Endocrinology and Metabolism and the Addison H. Gibson Laboratory of the University of Pittsburgh and the Medical Center, Shadyside, and Veterans Administration (Oakland) Hospitals.

Arch Intern Med. 1965;115(3):294-301. doi:10.1001/archinte.1965.03860150038007

IT HAS been reported that 1-methyl-Δ1-androstenolone administered as the acetate per os or as the enanthate by injection together with digitoxin improves skeletal muscle performance or retards loss of muscle strength in muscular dystrophy and related myopathies in man and in dystrophic mice.1,2 Our findings in 21 patients with muscular dystrophy treated with these agents are herein described.

Materials and Methods  The two steroids cited above were administered according to Dowben's program 2 for five to seven months or longer to a total of 21 patients with muscular dystrophy of childhood, teenage, or young adult onset. Ten of the patients received 20 mg of 1-methyl-Δ1-androstenolone acetate by mouth each day. In the other 11 patients 1-methyl-Δ1-androstenolone (2.0 mg per kilogram of body weight) was injected as the enanthate in sesame oil every two weeks.* Both groups received digitoxin, 0.2 to 0.7 mg per