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Are steroids be considered addictive?

      Addiction has been defined (by Dr. David Smith of the Haight-
 Ashbury Clinic in San Francisco) as:
      Compulsive use with loss of control, and
      continued use despite adverse consequences.
      When the use of any drug or substance, including steroids,
 fits this description, the drug user has an addiction
 problem.(1)  The characteristics of steroid addiction have
 been described as follows:(2)
      1)   Hormone is used over longer periods than desired.
      2)   Attempts are made to stop without success.
      3)   Substantial time is spent obtaining, using, or recovering
           from the hormones.
      4)   Use continues despite knowledge of significant
           psychological problems caused by the hormones.
      5)   Characteristic withdrawal symptoms occur.
      6)   Hormone use is resumed to relieve these withdrawal
      People who are dependent on anabolic steroids frequently began
 to use them before age 16.(3)  They take more cycles of
 steroids for longer periods of time, and take many different types
 of steroids at once.(3,4)  They feel that their peers
 use anabolics, and perceive themselves as having less strength or
 smaller body size than their peers.(3,4)  By contrast,
 there are no reports of anabolic steroid dependence caused by
 legitimate medical use.(3)  In a psychological study of
 eight weightlifters, all eight had at least two symptoms of drug
 dependence on steroids.  Six of them met the American Psychiatric
 Association's DSM-III-R definition of addiction.(5)

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REFERENCES 1. Brower KJ, Blow FC, Beresford TP, Fuelling C. Anabolic androgenic steroid dependence. J Clin Psychiatry 1989 Jan;50(1):31-3. 2. Kashkin KB, Kleber HD. Hooked on hormones - an anabolic steroid addiction hypothesis. JAMA J Am Med Assoc 1989 Dec 8;262(22):3166-70. 3. Brower KJ. Addictive potential of anabolic steroids. Psychiatric Annals 1992 Jan;22(1):30-4. 4. Hays LR, Littleton S, Stillner V. Anabolic steroid dependence. Am J Psychiatry 1990;147(1):122. 5. Brower KJ, Eliopulos GA, Blow FC, Catlin DH, Beresford TP. Evidence for physical and psychological dependence on anabolic androgenic steroids in 8 weight lifters. American Journal Of Psychiatry 1990 Apr;147(4):510-2. by Trent Tschirgi, R. Ph. (c) 1992 University of Maryland Office of Substance Abuse Studies. All Rights Reserved.
Disclaimer: Steroid use is illegal in a vast number of countries around the world. This is not without reason. Steroids should only be used when prescribed by your doctor and under close supervision. Steroid use is not to be taken lightly and we do not in any way endorse or approve of illegal drug use. The information is provided on the same basis as all the other information on this site, as informational/entertainment value.

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