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The Central Effects of Androgenic-anabolic Steroid Use

Mędraś, Marek, MD, PhD; Brona, Anna, MD, PhD; Jóźków, Paweł, MD, PhD

doi: 10.1097/ADM.0000000000000395
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Millions of men use androgenic-anabolic steroids (AAS) to stimulate muscle growth and improve physical appearance. Although 1 out of 3 people who uses androgenic-anabolic steroids develops a steroid use disorder, the effects of the drugs on the central nervous system and the psyche are still not well understood. Although most addictive substances improve mood immediately after administration, AAS exert less pronounced euphoric effects. Instead, they are primarily taken for the delayed gratification of increased muscle mass. Withdrawal from AAS may lead to a range of somatic and psychiatric symptoms, and, in many cases, comprehensive treatment supervised by an endocrinologist and a psychiatrist is required.

Department of Endocrinology, Diabetology & Isotope Treatment, Wrocław Medical University, Wrocław, Poland (MM); and Department of Sports Medicine & Dietetics, University School of Physical Education, Wrocław, Poland (MM, AB, PJ).

Send correspondence to Paweł Jóźków, MD, PhD, Department of Sports Medicine & Dietetics, University School of Physical Education, Ul. Paderewskiego 35, 51-612 Wrocław, Poland. E-mail: jozkow@gmail.com.

Received 30 June, 2017

Accepted 24 January, 2018

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

© 2018 American Society of Addiction Medicine