Rampant acne is one of the more obvious indicators of steroid use. When taking
anabolic steroids, an adult will commonly be confronted with this same problem.
This is because the sebaceous glands, which secrete oils in the skin, are
stimulated by androgens. Increasing the level of such hormones in the skin
may therefore enhance the output of oils, often causing acne to develop on
the back, shoulders and face. The use of strongly androgenic steroids in particular
can be very severe, in some instances causing blemishes on the skin or spots.
By washing your face and always showering after exercises it will reduce this
effect. If you have very severe acne see your dermatologist, but in most instances
even a dermatologists can't do anything until your cycle is over.
Aggressive behavior can be one of the scarier sides of steroid use. Men are
typically more aggressive than women because of the testosterone difference,
and especially with the use of steroids (especially androgens) can increase
a person’s aggressive tendencies. Yet some bodybuilders and power-lifters
like this effect for the use of lifting heavier and more explosive. A steroid
user who cannot manage to control themselves should seriously rethink there
process of cycling, because thinking doing more is better might be right or
wrong know your body first.
Anaphylactic shock is an allergic reaction to the presence of a foreign protein
in the body. It most commonly occurs when an individual has an allergy to
things like a specific medication (such as penicillin), insect bites, chemicals,
foods, food additives/preservatives. With this sometimes-fatal disorder the
smooth muscles are stimulated to contract, which may restrict a person’s
breathing. This reaction is not really seen with hormonal products like anabolic
steroids, but with counterfeits and low production values of these independent
underground labs it may.
Anabolic steroids can have a profoundly impact on the development of a fetus.
Adrenal Genital Syndrome in particular is a very disturbing occurrence, in
which a female fetus can develop male reproductive organs. Woman should not
use anabolic steroids or other medications that may be harmful to the fetus,
and always check with your doctor first.
The use of anabolic steroids
is shown to increase prothrombin time, or the duration it will take for a
blood clot to form. This basically means that while an individual is taking
steroids, he/she may notice that it takes slightly longer than usual for a
small cut or nosebleed to stop seeping blood. Realistically the changes in
clotting time are not extremely dramatic, so athletes are usually only concerned
with this side effect if planning for a surgery.
Although it is a popular
belief that steroids can give you cancer, this is actually a very rare phenomenon.
Since anabolic steroids are synthetic version of a natural hormone that your
body can metabolize quite easily, they usually place a very low level of stress
on the organs. In fact, many steroidal compounds are safe to administer to
individuals with a diagnosed liver condition, with little adverse effect.
The only real exception is C17 alpha alkylated compounds, like Anadrol 50
can lead to stressed liver, even liver damage and very rare cases lead to
As mentioned earlier, the
use of anabolic steroids may have an impact on the level of LDL (low density
lipoprotein), HDL (high density lipoprotein) and total cholesterol values.
As you probably know, HDL is considered the “good” cholesterol,
because it can act to remove the cholesterol deposits from the arteries. LDL
has the opposite effect, aiding in the buildup of cholesterol on the artery
walls. The general pattern seen with steroid use is a lowering of HDL concentrations,
while total and number of LDL increases.
Steroid use will obviously
have an impact on hormone levels in the body, which in turn may result in
a change in one’s general disposition or mood. Depression usually occurs
at times when an individual’s androgen/estrogen levels are significantly
off balance. This is most common with male bodybuilders, at times when anabolic
steroids are discontinued. During this period estrogen levels may be markedly
elevated, which is often coupled with a deeply suppressed endogenous testosterone
Gynecomastia is medical
term for the development of female breast tissue in the male body. This occurs
when the male is presented with unusually high level of estrogen, particularly
with the use of strong aromatizing androgens such as testosterone and Dianabol.
The excess estrogen can act upon receptors in the breast and stimulate the
growth of mammary tissues. If left unchecked this can lead to an actual obvious
and unsightly tissue growth under the nipple area. In many cases taking on
a very feminine appearance.
The use of highly androgenic
steroids can negatively impact the growth of scalp hair. In fact the most
common form of male pattern hair loss is directly linked to the level of androgens
in such tissues, most specifically the stronger DHT metabolite of testosterone.
The technical term for this type of hair loss is androgenetic alopecia, which
refers to the interplay of both the male androgenic hormones and a genetic
predisposition in bringing about this condition. Those who suffer from this
disorder are shown to posses finer hair follicles and higher levels of DHT
in comparison to a normal, hairy scalp.
Athletes using anabolic
steroids will commonly notice a rise in blood pressure during treatment. High
blood pressure is most often associated with the use of steroids that have
a high tendency for estrogen conversion, such as testosterone and Dianabol.
As estrogen builds in the body, the level of water and salt retention will
typically elevate (which will increase blood pressure). This may be further
amplified by the added stress of intense weight training and rapid weight
The use of anabolic/androgenic
steroids has been shown to produce changes in the body that may impact an
individual’s immune system. These changes however can be both good and
bad for the user. During steroid treatment for instance, many athletes find
they are less susceptible to viral illnesses.
Since your kidneys are
involved in the filtration and removal of byproducts from the body, the administration
of steroidal compounds (which are largely excreted in the urine) may cause
them some level of strain. Actual kidney damage is most likely to occur when
the steroid user is suffering from severe high blood pressure, as this state
can place an undue amount of stress on these organs. There is actually some
evidence to suggest that steroid use can be linked to the onset of Wilm’s
Tumor in adults, which is a rapidly growing kidney tumor normally seen in
children and infants. Such cases are so rare however, that no conclusive link
has been established.
Liver stress/damage is
not a side effect of steroid use in general, but is specifically associated
with the use of C17 alpha alkylated compounds. In surviving a first pass by
the liver, these compounds place some level of stress on the organ. In some
instances this has led to severe damage, even fatal liver cancer. The disease
peliosis hepatitis is one worry, which is an often life threatening condition
where the liver develops blood filled cysts. Liver cancer has also been noted
in certain cases. While these very serious complications have occurred on
certain occasions where liver-toxic compounds were prescribed for extended
periods, it is important to stress however that this is not very common with
steroid using athletes.
Prostate cancer is currently
one of the most common forms of cancer in males. Benign prostate enlargement
can precede this cancer, and is clearly an important medical concern for men
who are aging. Prostate complications are believed to be primarily dependent
on androgenic hormones, particularly the strong testosterone metabolite DHT
in normal situations, much in the same way estrogen is linked to breast cancer
The human body always prefers
to remain in a very balanced hormonal state, a tendency, a tendency known
as homeostasis. When the administration of androgens from an outside source
causes a surplus of hormone, it will cause the body to stop manufacturing
its own testosterone. Specifically this happens via a feedback mechanism,
where the hypothalamus detects a high level of sex steroids and shuts off
the release of GnRH (Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone, formerly referred to
as luteinizing hormone releasing hormone).
Many anabolic steroids
can increase the amount of water and sodium stored in body tissues. In some
instances steroid induced water retention can bring about a very bloated appearance
to the body in which will also reduce the visibility of muscle features. Although
water retention may not be the most unwelcome side effect during a bulking
cycle, it can lead to dangerous problems such as high blood pressure and kidney
damage. The body is clearly under more strain when dealing with unusually
high level of water, so athletes should not simply ignore this.