Most anabolic steroids are synthetic substances similar to the male sex hormone testosterone. They are taken orally or are injected. Some people, especially athletes, abuse anabolic steroids to build muscle and enhance performance. Abuse of anabolic steroids can lead to serious health problems, some of which are irreversible.
Street Names: Juice, gym candy, pumpers, stackers
Major effects of steroid abuse can include liver damage; jaundice; fluid retention; high blood pressure; increases in “bad” cholesterol. Also, males risk shrinking of the testicles, baldness, breast development, and infertility. Females risk growth of facial hair, menstrual changes, male-pattern baldness, and deepened voice. Teens risk permanently stunted height, accelerated puberty changes, and severe acne. All users, but particularly those who inject the drug, risk infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS and hepatitis.
Statistics and Trends:
The NIDA-funded 2008 Monitoring the Future Study showed that 0.9% of 8th graders, 0.9% of 10th graders, and 1.5% of 12th graders had abused anabolic steroids at least once in the year prior to being surveyed. Source: Monitoring the Future (University of Michigan Web Site) .
Source: The National Institute of Drug Abuse, 2010.