Two of the overall signs of steroid use are related to a by-product of testosterone metabolism, an androgen steroid called dihydrotestosterone; the result is the dihydrotestosterone-anabolic steroid androgen receptor-α (DHT-anabolic steroid). There has been increasing evidence for the existence of abuse of this and other dihydrotestosterone-anabolic steroids since the 1990s. Although the prevalence is small, these drugs are increasingly seen as being commonly abused by recreational athletes, including bodybuilders, strength athletes, and other professional athletes. More information regarding use of these drugs can be found in the literature search terms, “testosterone abuse/doping.”
Dihydrotestosterone metabolites are an extremely large class of metabolites of testosterone that have been found in samples from athletes at high-performance sports. Dihydrotestosterone metabolites are a large class of pharmacological chemicals produced by the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone, an androgen steroid with a wide clinical application. DHT is the predominant active metabolite of testosterone. It has been found to be the most potent anabolic agent and the most selective anabolic steroid available. DHT has been the subject of studies on its potential for enhancing protein synthesis and preventing muscle breakdown, steroid use signs. DHT is often abused and has been implicated in numerous criminal offenses including prostitution, gambling, and fraud, steroid use signs. It also occurs naturally in the brain during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. DHT has been also associated with obesity, as well as being associated with breast enlargement and erectile dysfunction in men.
A total of 12 dihydrotestosterone-anabolic steroids are recognized as having potential for enhancing athletic performance, but there are other dihydrotestosterone-anabolic steroids with the potential for anabolic effects. These include the following classes and families of dihydrotestosterone-anabolic steroids that have been used since the mid-1990s as a primary anabolic agent:
- β-D-lyase inhibitors
- Citrulline-hydrochloride inhibitor
- Glycine and other triterpene derivatives
Steroid use signs
Dihydrotestosterone-anabolic steroids are not directly related to the other main anabolic steroids, including testosterone, either directly or via metabolites and binding proteins. The development of these additional classes of dihydrotestosterone-anabolic steroids was spurred by a need to identify alternatives to testosterone at lower prices, use signs steroid. Other anabolic agents have been identified, such as stano
A recent internet study also concluded that anabolic steroid use among weightlifters and bodybuilders continues (12), and by all accounts, there are no signs of it stopping in athletics any time soon.
Although it’s never easy to be a steroid user or to come to terms with the consequences, the long-term consequences can be devastating and have an immediate adverse effect on your health. If the effects of steroid abuse are permanent, do not take any prescription medications for long-term recovery.
It’s easy to say that the use of the prescription steroid is a “phase”—a period of temporary highs followed by a period of lowered performance after the “boom” in use ended. But what about the long-term effects? Does steroid abuse have short- and long-term effects?
Research on the long-term effects of steroid abuse (13) has shown that abuse leads to an increase in both bone formation and the growth of certain carcinogenic substances (14). However, there is a much more insidious, cumulative effect to abuse: abuse actually causes you to become a bigger, more threatening bully than the people who used it—but only if you are using steroids for a very long time.
For example, a study from China found that both the “young”, high-level male steroid users and “old”, low-level male steroid users exhibited an increase in aggression toward women. The authors noted: “These results are consistent with the well-known and well-documented increased aggression in steroid users. It is difficult to define the precise reasons why the steroids cause aggression—for example, a drug that leads to an increase in aggression might be prescribed to lower the person’s aggression level. The authors speculate that the increases in aggression might also stem from an increase of the body’s sensitivity to hormones” (15, pg. 30).
It’s important to remember that the vast majority of steroids used by people in sports are not addictive, and there are many people out there who do not abuse steroid hormones like other drugs do, but may be susceptible to other effects like an increase in aggression or sexual behavior.
A common drug for steroid abuse is buprenorphine, which reduces cravings for cocaine and other opiates and also increases a person’s sensitivity to dopamine (16). While it is clear that many of these steroid users may be motivated by an intense need for the powerful drugs (17), there is nothing to suggest that they use them compulsively—only on a long-term basis.
- Anabolic steroids and physical performance
- Most researchers agree that steroids can increase testosterone levels (18,19), which may explain why some elite athletes seem to thrive and not
A recent internet study also concluded anabolic steroid use among weightlifters and bodybuilders continues (12), and by all accounts, there are no signs of it stopping in athletics any time soon.
Is there anything you can do to fight or minimize the risk of steroids?
It is common wisdom that athletes using steroids must be screened and tested and that the use of steroids must have a high likelihood of being detected. However, there is little consensus on how these things should be performed. There are many experts who believe that all athletes should be carefully screened, but others think that more is needed to fully evaluate whether a given athlete is predisposed to developing a steroid profile. There are also arguments for limiting the amount of time athletes are exposed to steroid products since they can have a profound influence on performance. We must not forget that there are many athletes with high levels of testosterone who never abuse steroids.
This is obviously a difficult case to make. Should there be a screening process for anyone who might attempt to use anabolic steroids? Yes, if it helps make athletes safer.
Does anabolic steroid use change the way you train?
No. The use of steroids is generally tolerated among elite athletes, which should not change the way you train. For example, many people have reported that their levels of growth hormone are actually higher when they train with steroids than when they train without. And most high-level athletes use steroids to gain a competitive edge, not to improve their performance or health.
Do you think it is likely you will get a negative drug test, even if you are doing it for pure sports performance?
It is possible. There are many reasons why these tests may not come back positive. Athletes are often not aware of the risk they are taking and also do not consider the amount of testing required. Some people are just not as interested, but it is also possible that a drug test is not done because it happens to be a weekend event or because they do not believe they need to be tested. But this is a dangerous area and some athletes have told us that if they were tested often, things would get tougher. Another factor in their mind is that if a test is negative, they do not think it is worth the risk. But in the end, there are no guarantees and every athlete is different. And if there was a good guarantee that a steroid user is not on drugs, why would there be any need for anabolic steroid testing?
Why don’t you recommend that athletes be tested?
We understand why anabolic steroid users would have trouble receiving a positive test. However, there is no reason to discourage people from taking a drug that is legal