Steroids & Appearance and Performance Enhancing Drugs (APEDs)

Although they have many side effects, steroids and performance-enhancing drugs have been used for a long time to treat many medical conditions. However, they are declared illegal in many states. If the patient takes a high dose or uses them for a long time, these drugs can cause serious health issues.

What Are Steroids And APEDs?

In simple words, steroids are man-made versions of hormones. These chemicals are used to reduce inflammation throughout the body. In addition to that, steroids also promote the growth of muscles. Moreover, these chemicals are prescribed by doctors in conditions such as allergies to reduce swelling and redness.

Furthermore, athletes also prefer using steroids and appearance and performance-enhancing drugs. Using them enhances muscle strength and size even if they do not do weight lifting exercises. Steroids allow bodybuilders to have a quicker recovery after strenuous training.

A study on using performance-enhancing drugs shows that about 3.3% of high school students admit using anabolic steroids [1]. This means that many young athletes are unaware of the severe side effects of such drugs. Despite the side effects, they use them for improving muscle mass, appearance, and muscle strength.

Another poll on the use of anabolic steroids in the US shows that about 43% of Americans believe that half of the American athletic professionals and American Olympic athletes use steroids [2].

What Are The Dangers?

Steroids and appearance and performance-enhancing drugs are illegal in most parts of the world. This is because they have some severe side effects. These chemicals have the potential to alter biological functions. Moreover, in some conditions, they can be seriously dangerous and even deadly.

The adverse effects of these drugs are the reason why athletes should never use them for performance-enhancing. Some common side effects of these drugs are blurred vision, acne, hair loss, insomnia, sudden mood changes, easy bruising, and lower resistance to infections.

In addition to the side effects, there are other dangers of using steroids as well. For Instance, a study regarding the steroids taken by injection shows that about 25% of steroid users use shared needles. This can result in the spread of infectious diseases like hepatitis and AIDS [3].

Oral Steroids

Oral steroids work like hormones in the body. They suppress the autoimmune system and reduce symptoms of inflammation. These steroids take 1-2 hours for you to feel the effects.

  • Anadrol (Oxymetholone)

Anadrol, with the chemical name Oxymetholone, is an anabolic steroid. It is used to treat certain types of anaemia—especially the lack of red blood cells caused by Chemotherapy.

  • Anavar (Oxandrolone)

Anavar, with the chemical name Oxandrolone, is also an anabolic drug. It is very similar to the male hormones produced by the body. It is used to reduce pain due to osteoporosis.

  • Dianabol (Methandienone)

Dianabol is an androgen and anabolic drug. This drug is almost no longer used. Previously, it was non-medically used by athletes to enhance their performance and strength.

  • Winstrol (Stanozolol)

Winstrol is a synthetic steroid. It is similar to testosterone. It is used by patients suffering from angioedema as it effectively decreases the severity and frequency of swelling.

  • Restandol (Testosterone Undecanoate)

Restandol, with the chemical name Testosterone Undecanoate, belongs to a class of drugs known as androgens. It is used by patients who have low testosterone levels.

Injectable Steroids

When steroids are injected into a muscle, they reduce redness and swelling in the nearby area. They also reduce the pain and stiffness of the muscle. They work within 24-48 hours, and the effect lasts for two to three weeks.

  • Deca-Durabolin (Nandrolone Decanoate)

Deca-Durabolin is an androgen and anabolic steroid. It is used to treat anemia in patients with kidney failure. These are also used to treat osteoporosis.

  • Durabolin (Nandrolone Phenpropionate)

Durabolin (Nandrolone Phenylpropionate) is an androgen and anabolic steroid. It is used to treat breast cancer and osteoporosis. Moreover, patients get the doses injected weekly.

  • Depo-Testosterone (Testosterone Cypionate)

Depo-Testosterone(Testosterone Cypionate) is used as prescription medicine. It is used to treat delayed puberty in males and hormonal imbalance, also breast cancer in females.

  • Agovirin (Testosterone Propionate)

Agovirin (Testosterone Propionate) is an androgen and anabolic steroid. It is a testosterone ester and hence used to treat low levels of testosterone in males.

  • Retendrol (Testosterone Phenylpropionate)

Retendrol (Testosterone Phenylpropionate) is a steroid that is used in androgen therapy. It is an approved steroid for the treatment of hypogonadism in men and breast cancer in women.

  • Equipoise (Boldenone Undecylenate)

Equipoise is an androgen and anabolic steroid. Bodybuilders use it as a undecylenate ester. It is administered illegally in horses to improve their growth and for efficient meat production.