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Alcohol & Other Drugs

Learn About Steroids Reference List

Author: Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research


The list below provides the references to the research studies discussed in Learn About Steroids. The references are arranged according to the relevant section where the research is mentioned. Within each section, pertinent sentences are listed in the order they appear in the information sheet. Links to the studies are included if available online. Materials not available online may be accessed through your local library.

What happens when we use steroids?

And while using steroids to develop a muscular body may make us feel more attractive, frequent use may lead to sexual difficulties:

Rahnema, C. D., Lipshultz, L. I., Crosnoe, L. E., Kovac, J. R., & Kim, E. D. (2014). Anabolic steroid-induced hypogonadism: Diagnosis and treatment. Fertility and Sterility, 101(5), 1271–9.

Kanayama, G., Hudson, J. I., & Pope, H. G. (2010). Illicit anabolic-androgenic steroid use. Hormones and Behavior, 58(1), 111–21.

Steroid use can lead to acne:

Walker, J., & Adams, B. (2009). Cutaneous manifestations of anabolic: Androgenic steroid use in athletes. International Journal of Dermatology, 48, 1044–1049.

Melnik, B., Jansen, T., & Grabbe, S. (2007). Abuse of anabolic-androgenic steroids and bodybuilding acne: An underestimated health problem. Journal of the German Society of Dermatology, 5(2), 110–7.

And frequent use of more than moderate amounts may result in temporary aggressive behaviour:

Bahrke, M. S. (2005). Psychological and behavioral effects of anabolic-androgenic steroids. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 3(4), 428–445.

Hall, R. C. W., Hall, R. C. W., & Chapman, M. J. (2005). Psychiatric complications of anabolic steroid abuse. Psychosomatics, 46(4), 285–90.

Trenton, A. J., & Currier, G. W. (2005). Behavioural manifestations of anabolic steroid use. CNS Drugs, 19(7), 571–595.

Regular use of more than moderate amounts is also linked to heart and liver disease:

Angell, P., Chester, N., Green, D., Somauroo, J., Whyte, G., & George, K. (2012). Anabolic steroids and cardiovascular risk. Sleep Medicine, 42(2), 119–134.

Higgins, J. P., Heshmat, A., & Higgins, C. L. (2012). Androgen abuse and increased cardiac risk. Southern Medical Journal, 105(12), 670–4.

Nascimento, J. H. M., & Medei, E. (2011). Cardiac effects of anabolic steroids: Hypertrophy, ischemia and electrical remodelling as potential triggers of sudden death. Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry, 11, 425–429.

Neri, M., Bello, S., Bonsignore, A., Cantatore, S., Riezzo, I., Turillazzi, E., & Fineschi, V. (2011). Anabolic androgenic steroids abuse and liver toxicity. Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry, 11, 430–437.

Achar, S., Rostamian, A., & Narayan, S. M. (2010). Cardiac and metabolic effects of anabolic-androgenic steroid abuse on lipids, blood pressure, left ventricular dimensions, and rhythm. American Journal of Cardiology, 106(6), 893–901.

Modlinski, R., & Fields, K. B. (2006). The effect of anabolic steroids on the gastrointestinal system, kidneys, and adrenal glands. Current Sports Medicine Reports, 5, 105–109.


When is using steroids a problem?

While most people who use steroids do not become dependent on the drug:

Quaglio, G., Fornasiero, A., Mezzelani, P., Moreschini, S., Lugoboni, F., & Lechi, A. (2009). Anabolic steroids: Dependence and complications of chronic use. Internal and Emergency Medicine, 4(4), 289–96.

Wood, R. I. (2008). Anabolic-androgenic steroid dependence: Insights from animals and humans. Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology, 29(4), 490–506.

Bahrke, M. S. (2005). Psychological and behavioral effects of anabolic-androgenic steroids. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 3(4), 428–445.


About the author

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The Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research, formerly CARBC, is a member of the BC Partners for Mental Health and Substance Use Information. The institute is dedicated to the study of substance use in support of community-wide efforts aimed at providing all people with access to healthier lives, whether using substances or not. For more, visit


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