The Use of Steroids in Professional Sports
They’re among the world’s most controversial drugs. Not Heroin, Ganja, Coke or Crystal Meth, but Anabolic Steroids. Steroids are medical treatments that come in two varieties: Anabolic Steroids and Corticosteroids. These are both synthetic versions of hormones produced naturally in the body but they perform two completely different tasks. Corticosteroids are used by doctors to decrease inflammation. Anabolic Steroids are the familiar term for the synthetic version of the male sex hormone testosterone. Its technical name although, is Anabolic-Androgenic Steroids (AAS). “Anabolic referring to muscle-building and Androgenic referred to increased male sexual characteristics,” defined by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Anabolic steroids are currently banned in every major sporting organization. In the United States, anabolic steroids are also illegal without a medical prescription. According to the DEA in the United States, "Anabolic steroids are Schedule III substances under the Controlled Substances Act. Only a small number of anabolic steroids are approved for either human or veterinary use. Steroids may be prescribed by a licensed physician for the treatment of testosterone deficiency, delayed puberty, low red blood cell count, breast cancer, and tissue wasting resulting from AIDS." (Drug Enforcement Administration).
Professional athletes of all sports have been using steroids dating all the way back to the first Olympic Games. Most athletes have a small window of opportunity, only lasting a couple of years. Even though deemed as unethical and illegal in all sports, millions of dollars and world records can ride on gaining the slightest edge. Most athletes have a small window of opportunity Due to this fact, there’s probably not an athlete alive who hasn’t considered taking them and that’s when many decide to use them as an advantage. Anabolic Steroids are taken by athletes to increase muscle mass while decreasing fat rapidly and efficiently. They can push the physiological limits of the muscle, making it bigger, faster and stronger than it can get naturally. Steroids achieve this affect on the body by enhancing the natural process of muscle building. The use of steroids has had a negative impact on the lives and careers of many athletes, causing suspensions, bans, and even the loss of medals and other awards and records earned in international events. A few of the high profile athletes whose lives and careers by their anabolic steroid use include: Barry Bonds, Lyle Alzada, Jose Canseco, Ben Johnson, Chris Benoit, Roger Clemens, Marion Jones, Alex Rodriguez and Lance Armstrong.
Steroids cannot only affect its users and abusers, but may also affect those who associate with them. In a recent documentary about Lance Armstrong called The Armstrong Lie, it’s revealed of many people who were ruined from trying to cross him. From interviewers, to other cyclists and even his own former teammate Frankie...