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Side Effects of Prolonged Steroid Abuse
Initial signs that anabolic steroids are being abused may include rapid weight gain and unusual mood swings. Emotions may include increased aggressiveness. Acne is almost always seen.
The side effects of steroids can be explained by the excess androgen and anabolic drug levels present in the body.
The use of steroids suppresses the naturally occurring testosterone in the body and, in males, may lead to a decrease in testicle size (atrophy), decreased sperm production, infertility, and baldness. As well, the excess steroid can be converted to estrogen in males and may lead to enlarged breasts (known as gynecomastia). In females, the excess testosterone production may lead to a deeper voice, changes in the menstrual cycle, and increased hair production. Baldness may also be seen in women.
These steroids also have direct effects on numerous organs:
In adolescents who have yet to complete growing, the use of steroids may stunt growth and stop bones, joints, and muscles from reaching full maturity. As well, premature sexual development may occur.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/29/2014
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