If sufficient caution is not exercised in using them, side effects of anabolic steroids can indeed be quite serious. There have been many studies in determining what an undue overdose of anabolic steroids can cause, most of which are from accounts of case reports rather than formal epidemiological analyses. Nearly all results are causes for alarm.
Let us look at possible anabolic and androgenic effects. The steroid can result in:
- Increasing protein synthesis from amino acids
- Boost in muscle mass and strength
- Remodeling and growth of bone
- Appetite increasing manifold
- Increasing production of red blood cells by stimulation of bone marrow
- Growth of pubic, beard, chest, and limb hair
- Deepening of voice due to increase in vocal chord size
- Enlargement of clitoris in females and penis in male children
- Suppressing endogenous sex hormones while increasing libido
If the above are more noticeable side effects of anabolic steroids, some others that are not readily recognizable or known are as under:
- Levels of HDL (high density lipoproteins) or good cholesterol decrease, consequently registering an increase in low-density lipoproteins (LDL) or bad cholesterol. This means there is a risk of increase in cardiovascular ailment. An added problem is the possibility of increase in blood pressure.
- DHT or dihydrotestosterone formation increases, which may be responsible in acceleration of baldness and prostate cancer.
- There is an increasing chance of liver tumors, whereby a rare condition happens in which blood-filled cysts form in the liver. Both the tumors and the cysts can rupture, causing internal bleeding.
Though many side effects of anabolic steroids are not known as life threatening in near term, there is always the possibility of longer-term harm. In fact, users concentrate so much on immediate gains that they often overlook obvious adverse effects, and therefore many of these go unreported or unanalyzed. The trouble is many side effects of anabolic steroids become irreversible if used for a prolonged period without the benefit of adequate judgment.