Anabolic Steroids What Are They? Ever wondered how those bulky weight lifters got so big? While some may have gotten their muscles through a strict regimen of weightlifting and diet, others may have gotten that way through the illegal use of anabolic-androgenic steroids. "Anabolic" refers to a steroid's ability to help build muscle and "androgenic" refers to their role in promoting the development of male sexual characteristics. Other types of steroids, like cortisol, estrogen, and progesterone, do not build muscle, are not anabolic, and therefore do not have the same harmful effects. Anabolic-androgenic steroids are usually synthetic substances similar to the male sex hormone testosterone. They do have legitimate medical uses. Sometimes doctors prescribe them to help people with certain kinds of anemia and men who don't produce enough testosterone on their own. But doctors never prescribe anabolic steroids to young, healthy people to help them build muscles. Without a prescription from a doctor, anabolic steroids are illegal. There are many different anabolic-androgenic steroids. Here's a list of some of the most common ones taken today: Andro, oxandrin, dianabol, winstrol, deca-durabolin, and equipoise. What Are the Common Street Names? Slang words for steroids are hard to find. Most people just say steroids. On the street, steroids may be called "roids" or "juice." [ 2 ] The scientific name for this class of drugs is anabolic- androgenic steroids. But even scientists shorten it to anabolic steroids. [ 3 ] How Are They Used? Some steroid users pop pills. Others use hypodermic needles to inject steroids directly into muscles. When users take drugs without regard for their legality or their adverse health effects they are called "abusers." Steroid abusers have been known to take doses 10 to 100 times higher than the amount prescribed by a doctor for medical reasons. [ 1 ] What Is the Scope of Steroid Abuse? Most teens are smart and stay away from steroids. As part of a 2009 NIDA-funded study, teens were asked if they ever tried steroids—even once. Only 1.3 percent of 8th- and 10th-graders and 2.2 percent of 12th-graders ever tried steroids. [ 4
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- Summer '07
- anabolic steroids, Anabolic steroid, NIDA