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J Athl Train. 1994 March; 29(1): 60-62, 64.
PMCID: PMC1317760

Anabolic Steroid Use in the Adolescent Athlete

Jeffrey A. Potteiger, PhD, CSCS
Jeffrey A. Potteiger is Assistant Professor at Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045.


Recent surveys indicate that the use of androgenic-anabolic steroids (anabolic steroids) is prevalent among adolescent athletes, particularly those in high school. The cost of clinical drug testing makes it impractical to use random testing to identify users of these ergogenic aids. The athletic trainer is often in a position to identify anabolic steroid users if he/she knows the clinical signs and symptoms. In this article, we briefly discuss the history of anabolic steroid use, how they work, their potentially dangerous side effects, evidence of increased use by adolescent athletes, and a list of clinical signs and symptoms. Finally, we suggest strategies that may help athletic trainers counsel athletes about anabolic steroid use.

Full text

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Buckley WE, Yesalis CE, 3rd, Friedl KE, Anderson WA, Streit AL, Wright JE. Estimated prevalence of anabolic steroid use among male high school seniors. JAMA. 1988 Dec 16;260(23):3441–3445. [PubMed]
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  • Nelson MA. Androgenic-anabolic steroid use in adolescents. J Pediatr Health Care. 1989 Jul-Aug;3(4):175–180. [PubMed]
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  • Wilson JD. Androgen abuse by athletes. Endocr Rev. 1988 May;9(2):181–199. [PubMed]
  • Windsor RE, Dumitru D. Anabolic steroid use by athletes. How serious are the health hazards? Postgrad Med. 1988 Sep 15;84(4):37–49. [PubMed]
  • Wright JE. Anabolic steroids and athletics. Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 1980;8:149–202. [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of Athletic Training are provided here courtesy of National Athletic Trainers Association