Athletes using steroids for a prolonged period of time face damaging and life-threatening side effects. Anabolic steroids are “synthetically produced variants of the naturally occurring male hormone testosterone” (“Anabolic Steroids”). Anabolic means “tissue building” (“Anabolic Steroids”). They have many nicknames like ‘“arnolds, gym candy, pumpers, roids, stackers, weight trainers, and juice”’ (“Anabolic Steroids”). Anabolic steroids are androgenic drugs. This means they “promote masculine characteristics” (“Anabolic Steroids”). Anabolic steroids can be administered two ways, orally or by intramuscular injection. Most abusers use a “combination of oral doses and injections for six to twelve week cycles” (Anderson). They usually take steroids for a “limited period of time to reach a particular goal” (“Anabolic Steroids”). “Stacking” (Anderson) is known as using multiple steroid preparations and increasing dosage over time. Some abusers may take as much as one-hundred times normal therapeutic doses of anabolic steroids (“Anabolic Steroids”). It is said that oral preparations are easier to flush out of your system than injections. This is a real concern. Athletes may be taking steroids, but clearing them from their system before drug testing.
It is a proven fact that anabolic steroids produce a gain in strength and muscle size “beyond that which could be achieved with rigorous training and diet alone” (Anderson). They have been said to be the “perfect performance enhancing drug” (Minnie), but this is nowhere near true. Although, it is acknowledged that steroids do improve muscle mass, they are highly dangerous. They are known as “a potential shortcut” (Minnie) and cheating. Most anabolic steroids are imported from third world countries (Shafa). It is predicted that 5% to 11% of males and 2.5% of females are abusing steroids in the United States (Anderson). These muscle increasing steroids were formulated in the 1930’s for “treating muscle wasting diseases and sexual dysfunctions” (Minnie). Anabolic steroids are not the same as medical steroids. Medical steroids are known as corticosteroids. Corticosteroids are commonly used as cough suppressants. These steroids may only be used when subscribed by a doctor. Unlike anabolic steroids which have several serious and irreversible risks, if corticosteroids are used responsibly and correctly they are very helpful and safe.
Not only are anabolic steroids dangerous to your health and mental state, for athletes they can ruin their hard earned career. The United States government outlawed purchasing and selling anabolic steroids in 1990. They were banned in sports because of the “dangerous side effects and unfair advantage” (“Anabolic Steroids”) this drug has on the players.
Athletes are drug tested in and out of season with a urine sample. There are serious consequences for possession or selling steroids. Possession of the drug is a maximum one year in prison and minimum one thousand...