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Published on: 02-Feb-2022

Sportsmen have long been taking performance-enhancing drugs to perform well in sports. Find out the top 10 risks of performance-enhancing drugs in this article.


Most serious athletes will tell you that they are driven by a strong desire to succeed. 

Athletes often dream of gaining a seat on a professional squad or winning a match, in addition to the gratification of personal achievement. 

The usage of performance-enhancing medications has grown increasingly frequent in such an environment.

However, utilizing performance-enhancing substances can be dangerous. 

Research about androstenedione, anabolic steroids, erythropoietin, human growth hormone, creatine, diuretics, and stimulants, as well as the potential benefits, health hazards, and many unknowns associated with these so-called performance-enhancing medicines. 

You might conclude that the advantages don’t outweigh the risks. However, if you want to find more info on these drugs and drug addiction, you can contact the specialists at Ocean Recovery drug rehab center. 

What Are Performance Enhancing Drugs?

Anabolic-androgenic steroids, or simply anabolic steroids, are used by some athletes to increase their muscle mass and strength. Testosterone is the primary anabolic steroid hormone generated by your body. 

The so-called designer drugs, synthetic steroids created illegally to be undetectable by current drug tests, are a hazardous class of anabolic steroids. They are designed exclusively for athletes and have no medical approval. 

The adrenal glands, ovaries, and testes all generate androstenedione. It’s a hormone that both men and women convert to testosterone and a form of estrogen. Andro is a restricted substance that can only be obtained with a prescription. 

In the United States, it is unlawful for athletes to use a performance-enhancing drug.

10 Risks of Performance Enhancing Drugs

Doping allegations have impacted almost every professional sport. The World Anti-Doping Authority has banned over 192 performance-enhancing drugs and procedures. In addition, many performance-enhancing medications can put users’ health in danger in the long run. Let’s find them out: 

1: Organ Damage

The hazards of using stimulants vary depending on the drug, but they are often substantial. 

Cocaine usage, for example, can also become addictive and, in rare situations, lead to a heart attack. 

Amphetamines can harm the liver, kidneys, and cardiovascular system and produce hallucinations and violent behavior, and long-term usage can alter the brain’s memory and emotion structures.

2: Women May Develop Masculine Features And Vice Versa

Athletes who use anabolic steroids say that they minimize body fat and injury healing time and enhance muscle mass. 

However, the masculinizing side effects, including increased body hair and a deeper voice, aren’t always desired, especially in women. 

To counteract these adverse effects, scientists created anabolic steroids with a lesser androgenic effect. As a result, men may develop prominent breasts, shrunken testicles, infertility, and prostate gland enlargement.

3: Gigantism

Abnormal HGH before or during puberty can cause gigantism, excessive height, and other physical characteristics. 

Acromegaly, a disorder characterized by abnormal development of the head, feet, and hands, can develop during puberty when HGH levels are elevated. 

The lips, nose, tongue, jaw, and forehead grow more extensive while the fingers and toes spread and become spade-like. 

The size of the organs and digestive system may also rise, potentially leading to heart failure.

4: Too Many Red Blood Cells

When EPO levels are excessively high, the body produces too many red blood cells, thickening the blood and increasing the risk of clotting, heart attack, and stroke. 

Indeed, EPO has been linked to the fatalities of several athletes, primarily bikers. 

Antibodies directed against EPO can be developed due to repeated doses of EPO, resulting in anemia. However, the long-term health consequences of long-term EPO use remain unknown.

5: Increased Risk Of Blood Clots

The hazards of using blood transfusions to boost red blood cell production are identical to those of using EPO and SOC: thicker blood, leading to clotting, heart attack, and stroke. 

Another danger is associated with the procedure itself. Because transfusions entail several steps—drawing blood, storing it, and reusing it—there are numerous potentials for anything to go wrong. 

Contamination of the blood or equipment, infection, and incorrect administration of blood products are serious health risks that can lead to death.

6: Reduced Blood Circulation

Beta-blockers have a solid safety record when used for a valid medical reason, such as to treat a cardiac problem, high blood pressure, or anxiety, and under the supervision of a skilled practitioner.

When used without a valid medical reason, reduced circulation in the hands and feet, dizziness, weariness, dry mouth, and drowsiness are all possible adverse effects. 

Impotence, asthma attacks, memory loss, and heart failure are the most significant adverse effects.

7: Dehydration and Dizziness

Diuretics are relatively safe when used to treat legitimate medical illnesses such as heart failure, high blood pressure, kidney and liver issues, etc.

However, because diuretics encourage frequent urination, they can cause dehydration, disorientation, muscular cramps, and constipation. 

Tiredness, fever, skin rash, and loss of appetite are other side effects. In addition, disruptions lead to the heart’s regular rhythms and electrolyte imbalances.

8: Nerve Failures

Ephedrine is a stimulant for the central nervous system. Ephedrine has actions similar to adrenaline, but it is also harmful.

It can have catastrophic cardiovascular consequences, including stroke, as well as a slew of other issues. As a result, it has been outlawed by athletic organizations and the FDA.

During early development, steroids regulate the activity and plasticity of neurons and glial cells, and they continue to have trophic and protective effects in the adult nervous system.

9: Muscle Pain

Anabolic steroid users typically see a significant boost in muscle strength very fast. 

This means that people can work out more frequently and recover faster for a more extended time. 

This can result in a significant increase in lean muscle tissue. 

Even the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are also harmful to joints and muscles, and consuming them in large quantities is not recommended. 

10: Premature Balding

Steroids are known to cause male hair loss by increasing the production of dihydrotestosterone in the body. 

One of the main reasons for baldness in males is having too much DHT in the body. DHT is a steroid hormone produced by the body as a by-product of testosterone production. 

Many steroids cause DHT levels in the body to rise, resulting in substantial hair loss. 

Signing Off

Athletes use performance-enhancing drugs for various social, emotional, and economic reasons. However, they can take these drugs under medical supervision and deal with the adverse consequences on time. If you want to know more about them, ping us in the comment section below.


The post Performance Enhancing Drugs In Sports: 10 Risks To Be Aware Of appeared first on Sports Medicine Weekly.