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To determine the incidence of anabolic- androgenic steroid use among a sample of community college student-athletes; also, to compare various aspects of users and nonusers, as well as to describe usage patterns.
A survey following random stratified cluster sampling techniques was administered to 10 California community colleges.
A group of 1,185 male and female student- athletes.
An anonymous 27-item, valid, and reliable questionnaire was administered surveying anabolic-androgenic steroid use and usage patterns.
Of all student-athletes sampled, 3.3% were anabolic -androgenic steroid users. Gender-specific incidence rates were 4.2% for males and 1.2% for females. Anabolic- androgenic steroid users tended to be older males, usually in their second year of college. The users were more often minorities. Users believed that they were knowledgeable about anabolic-androgenic steroids, and that the rates of usage were higher than reported. Their sources of steroid information were often lifting partners and fellow athletes. Use of these drugs was most often in cycles (mean of 6.7 weeks) and was frequently done using multiple anabolic-androgenic steroids at a time. The average number of cycles completed was 2.9. A wide variety of steroids were used by the student-athletes, of which most were obtained from illegal sources.
Anabolic-androgenic steroid use among Califonia community college student-athletes were similar to other previous research studies involving high school and university student-athletes.