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The Collaborative International Dictionary
Anabolic steroid

Anabolic steroid \An`a*bol"ic ster"oid\, n. (Physiol., Chem.) any of a variety of synthetic derivatives or analogs of testosterone, which promote the increase of muscle mass and strength. The anabolic steroids are sometimes used by athletes to increase muscular strength so as to enhance their performance in competition. They have serious side effects, and the use of such compounds has been banned by many athletic regulatory committees.

anabolic steroid

n. (context steroid hormone English) A class of steroid hormones that promote growth of tissue.

anabolic steroid

n. any of a group of synthetic steroid hormones used to stimulate muscle and bone growth; more than 100 have been developed and each requires a prescription to be used legally in the United States; sometimes used illicitly by athletes to increase their strength

Anabolic steroid

Anabolic steroids, technically known as anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS), are drugs that are structurally related to the cyclic steroid rings system and have similar effects to testosterone in the body. They increase protein within cells, especially in skeletal muscles. Anabolic steroids also have androgenic and virilizing properties, including the development and maintenance of masculine characteristics such as the growth of the vocal cords and body hair (secondary sexual characteristics). The word anabolic, referring to anabolism, comes from the Greek ἀναβολή anabole, "that which is thrown up, mound."

Anabolic steroids were first made in the 1930s, and are now used therapeutically in medicine to stimulate muscle growth and appetite, induce male puberty and treat chronic wasting conditions, such as cancer and AIDS. The American College of Sports Medicine acknowledges that AAS, in the presence of adequate diet, can contribute to increases in body weight, often as lean mass increases and that the gains in muscular strength achieved through high-intensity exercise and proper diet can be additionally increased by the use of AAS in some individuals.

Health risks can be produced by long-term use or excessive doses of anabolic steroids. These effects include harmful changes in cholesterol levels (increased low-density lipoprotein and decreased high-density lipoprotein), acne, high blood pressure, liver damage (mainly with oral steroids), and dangerous changes in the structure of the left ventricle of the heart. Conditions pertaining to hormonal imbalances such as gynecomastia and testicular size reduction may also be caused by anabolic steroids.

Ergogenic uses for anabolic steroids in sports, racing, and bodybuilding as performance-enhancing drugs are controversial because of their adverse effects and the potential to gain unfair advantage in competitive physical competitions. Their use is referred to as doping and banned by most major sporting bodies. For many years, AAS have been by far the most detected doping substances in IOC-accredited laboratories. In countries where AAS are controlled substances, there is often a black market in which smuggled, clandestinely manufactured or even counterfeit drugs are sold to users.

The most commonly used anabolic steroids are testosterone (and its various esters, but most commonly testosterone propionate, testosterone enanthate, and testosterone cypionate), nandrolone (as nandrolone decanoate or nandrolone phenylpropionate), stanozolol, and methandienone (methandrostenolone). Others also available and used commonly but to a lesser extent include methyltestosterone, oxandrolone, mesterolone, and oxymetholone, as well as drostanolone, methenolone (methylandrostenolone), and fluoxymesterone. Boldenone and trenbolone are used in veterinary medicine.

Usage examples of "anabolic steroid".

His hands were massive enough to juggle cantaloupes, and a single letter was tattooed on the base phalange of each finger, thumbs excluded, to spell out ANABOLIC, as in anabolic steroid.