Fate of Anabolic Steroids in the Body

  • Howard D. Colby
  • Penelope A. Longhurst


The use of anabolic steroids in an attempt to enhance athletic performance has become a widespread practice in both amateur and professional sports in recent years. The rationale for such use (or abuse) of these agents is based upon the growth-promoting and musculature-developing, or anabolic, effects of the naturally occurring steroid hormones known as androgens. These are the hormones that play an important part in the sexual development of males, that is, the production of various masculine traits. The physiologically most important of the naturally occurring androgens is the hormone testosterone, which is produced principally by the testes. The anabolic steroids used by athletes are various synthetic derivatives of testosterone, substances with longer durations of action and/or greater potencies than the physiological androgens. Some of these compounds have been synthesized with the goal of enhancing the anabolic effects of testosterone relative to its masculinizing actions. Since these synthetic preparations are not native or endogenous to the body, they are classified as exogenous substances or drugs.


Androgen Receptor Luteinizing Hormone Anabolic Steroid Hereditary Angioedema Luteinizing Hormone Secretion 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Howard D. Colby
    • 1
  • Penelope A. Longhurst
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of Illinois College of Medicine at RockfordRockfordUSA

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