Anabolic Steroids, use and side effects

Essay by Anonymous UserHigh School, 11th grade December 1996

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Anabolic Steroids


Anabolic steroids are performance enhancing drugs. They are a synthetic form of the chemical testosterone that is normally found in the body. By taking anabolic steroids, a person's testosterone level can be raised up to a hundred times more than the usual amount of 2.5 to 10 mg. Per day. The increase in testosterone increases anabolic activity, which results in greater muscle bulk. It also increases protein synthesis and androgenic activity (enhanced secondary sexual characteristics) in males. The users of steroids want to increase the anabolic effects and reduce the androgenic effects, but no steroid is known to have just anabolic effects.


Anabolic steroids can be taken in two ways, by injection or they can be taken orally. Both oral and injected steroids carry benefits and adverse effects. Orally taken steroids are well absorbed into the stomach and they are excreted fairly rapidly. The bad side of taking oral steroids is that they are more toxic than injected steroids.

They are highly potent, which makes the risk of overdosing very high. Steroids that are injected are less toxic to the liver and are less potent than oral steroids on an equal dosage basis. Injected steroids have a delayed take up, which makes them last longer. It also allows them to be detected in drug tests for a longer period of time.

How they work in the body:

When anabolic steroids are introduced into the body, under certain conditions they increase: protein synthesis, lean body mass, and the nitrogen balance in the body. A steroid receptor is formed which stimulates the synthesis of enzymes. With the stimulus of enzymes in the body, protein synthesis is also increased. One enzyme system that is placed into the body by the receptor is the ribonucleic acid (RNA)-polymerose system. This system...