Cardiovascular manifestations of anabolic steroids in association with demographic variables in body building athletes

Farzad Gheshlaghi, Mohamadreza Piri Ardakani, Gholam Reza Masoumi, Mohadese Behjati, Parva Paydar


Background: The most common drug abuse among athletes is anabolic steroids which lead to the development of cardiovascular diseases and sudden death. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate cardiovascular outcomes of anabolic consumption in body building athletes. Materials and Methods: Totally, 267 male athletes at the range of 20-45 years old with the regular consumption of anabolic steroids for >2 months with at least once weekly. High-density lipoprotein (HDL), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), triglyceride (TG),and hematocrit (Hct) levels were measured after 10 h of fasting. Data analysis was performed using K2, t-test, ANOVA and correlation coefficient through SPSS 17. Results: There was a nonsignificant difference between groups regarding HDL, TG, and total cholesterol.There was a significant decrease in the total and categorized LDL and Hct levels in consumers of anabolic steroid versus nonusers (P =0.01 and P = 0.041, respectively). Results showed a significant increase in systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP and DBP) in anabolic steroid users which associates with duration of abuse (P = 0.02 and P = 0.03, respectively). No significant electrocardiography changes were found within the follow-up period. Conclusion: Increase in SBP or DBP is a common complication of these drugs which can lead serious vascular disorders. The lower LDL cholesterol level might be due to the higher amounts of lipid consumption in these athletes.


Key words: Anabolic steroids, body building, cardiovascular, complication, dyslipidemia, hypertension, lipid index

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