Muscle Strengthening with Anabolic-Androgenic Steroids in Resistance Trained Athletes and Non-Athletes

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Simply because the same muscular strength enhancements are gained by athletes and non-athletes this does not mean that anabolic-androgenic steroids do not come without side effects (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004). The adverse physical and mental side effects can affect long term users of anabolic-androgenic steroids as well as short term users whether they be athletes or non-athletes (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004). Side effects related to anabolic steroid use fall into many different categories such as: cardiovascular, hepatic, dermatologic, reproductive-endocrine, male specific and female specific, behavioral and injection related (Amsterdam et al.,2010). Some minor sometimes irreversible physical side effects seen in long time and short term steroid users include but are not limited to: acne (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), testicular atrophy in males and clitoral hypertrophy in females (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), voice deepening in females (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), male pattern baldness (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), increased hair growth (Evans, 2004), gynecomasita in males and breast tissue atrophy in females (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), increased cholesterol levels (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), impaired diastolic function (Amsterdam et al.,2010).
Some chorionic physical side effects due to steroid use include but are not limited to: cancer (Evans, 2004), hypertension (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), heart attacks (Evans, 2004), jaundice (Amsterdam et al.,2010), neoplasia (Amsterdam et al.,2010), infertility (Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010), and atherosclerosis (Evans, 2004). As well, physical dependence on anabolic-androgenic steroids in some individuals, due to their long term use can increase the chances of adverse physical effects (Evans, 2004).
Along with the wide array of physical side effects that accompany the use of anabolic-androgenic steroids there is a spectrum of mental side effects that also can impact an individual taking anabolic-androgenic steroids (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004, Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010, Talih et al., 2007). There are varying forms of mental side effects (Harthens and Kuipers, 2004, Evans, 2004, Amsterdam et al.,2010, Talih et al., 2007). These vary from mildly irritating behavioral effects to uncontrollable behavioral outbreaks (Evans, 2004). Unlike with physical side effects which are based mainly on the amount and duration the steroid is taken the mental effects depend more on the dosage administered (Evans, 2004). Some mental side effects steroid users’ can exhibit include but are not limited to: aggression (Evans, 2004, Talih et al., 2007), depression (Evans, 2004, Talih et al., 2007), mood swings (Evans, 2004, Talih et al., 2007), anxiety (Evans, 2004), and body obsession (Evans, 2004).

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