Posts Tagged ‘AAS’


// October 29th, 2010 // No Comments » // Impotence

Anabolism, the building up of muscle, is the opposite of catabolism, the destruction of muscle. Men and women with diseases like cancer and AIDS become weak because of a breakdown of their muscles, a process known as catabolism. Testosterone and its clones reverse catabolism and speed anabolism and are referred to as anabolic (muscle-building) androgenic (male hormone) steroids (AAS).

Healthy men and women who use testosterone or other AAS pills in muscle-building programs are engaging in “off-label” AAS use.

Athletes know that large doses of testosterone or other AAS drugs are needed to help them achieve the bulk, strength, and size they need to be effective in competitive sports. Long-term consequences of male hormones on cholesterol and lipid profile or prostate gland size are of little concern to them when they are struggling to be a split second faster or lift five more pounds. Although most sports organizations have stipulations against the use of “performance-enhancing drugs,” few athletes heed these regulations and as role models have fostered an attitude encouraging rampant AAS use.


// October 29th, 2010 // No Comments » // Steroids

The carefully crafted and meticulously executed Bhasin study cited above used a single consistent very high dose of testosterone. Its conclusions will most likely satisfy both scientists and athletes. But those who endorse and promote “off-label” AAS use view most scientific studies with disdain because these reports failed to replicate the complex sequencing of steroid administration preferred by those who rely on AAS to gain a competitive edge. Athletes tend not to take medication in the strictly controlled amounts required for credible research studies. Rather, they cycle AAS use to maximize benefit and decrease the risk of detection in urine assays. A practice known as “stacking,” the ritual sequencing of more than one steroid, is common. Athletes believe that by using more than one AAS they will be able to activate more and different types of androgen activity (androgen receptors). There is no scientific proof that this practice actually works, for there is only one androgen receptor and it is already filled to maximum capacity by the doses of AAS routinely used by athletes. Some also believe that optimum benefit cannot be achieved with any single AAS schedule. To avoid a “plateau,” they scramble the order of AAS administration, often beginning their cycle with low doses, then building with sequentially higher doses before tapering down just prior to competition, constructing in essence an AAS “pyramid.”

Androgens are known to be potent stimuli to prostate growth. Anxiety over the impact of unfettered, relentless androgen stimulation on prostate size has been a cause of considerable anxiety among physicians but has apparently not been one for athletes preoccupied with long-term consequences of “off-label” AAS use. Rather, it is the expectation of short-term gain, not long-term consequences, that is of paramount concern to the current crop of AAS aficionados. They tend to equate prostate problems with the remote destination of advanced age, which is not a primary concern of young competitive athletes.

AAS users believe they are clever enough to manipulate drug treatment to fend off the short-term adverse effects of AAS use and are cocky enough to believe they will have the same good fortune in sidestepping the more pernicious long-term consequences of continued androgen bombardment of their bodies. Still, several of the short-term problems — acne, fluid retention, balding, and breast enlargement — caused by high-dose AAS use do require attention. To cope with these bothersome problems, athletes have once again dipped into the pharmacy to concoct “the array.”