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Anabolic Steroids are Supposedly a Gateway to Cocaine Abuse in Teens

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~Dr Juice~

Jan 1, 1999
Victoria B.C.

Anabolic Steroids are Supposedly a Gateway to Cocaine Abuse in Teens
April 9th, 2019

The news media has found yet another dubious way to demonize anabolic steroids.

Anabolic steroids have a long list of well-known side effects that have been established by decades of research. Yet there remains a never-ending effort to overstate and exaggerate these side effects and even make up others. The latest sensationalized news story to demonize steroids makes it sound like the muscle-building drugs will turn bodybuilders into a bunch of cocaine addicts.

Performance-enhancing drugs can lead to cocaine addiction” according to one sensationalistic headline. The outlandish claim is based on unpublished research out of the University of Puerto Rico.

The UPR researchers will presented their data at the annual meeting of the American Physiological Society (APS) during Experimental Biology 2019 in Orlando on April 8, 2019.

Steroid side effects: Gyno, hair loss, testicular atrophy and — cocaine addiction?

A spoiler alert: the study did not involve human bodybuilders. The research involved the use of Sprague Dawley female rats. And the rats did not even lift weights.

The UPR researchers prepared four groups of female rats. One group was given anabolic steroids (nandrolone) for 10 days. One group was given steroids and cocaine. One was given only cocaine. And the last group was given neither drug.

The two nandrolone-treated groups displayed a higher degree of “locomotor sensitization” than the cocaine-only group and the no-drug group. Locomotor sensitization is described as an increased sensitivity to cocaine.

The UPR researchers speculated that nandrolone makes cocaine more powerful and more appealing. The nandrolone reportedly “modifies the brain circuitry that regulates addictive behaviors, increasing the psychoactive properties of cocaine.”

The steroid-induced enhancement of cocaine’s psychoactive properties apparently make steroid-using rats more likely to use and/or become addicted to cocaine.

It is a big leap to suggest that this scenario could be extrapolated to human steroid-users. But the researchers did not hesitate to warn that this could result in juiced bodybuilders (of the human variety) turning into a bunch of cocaine addicts.

Steroid use by teens is never recommended. There are many good reasons for this. The unfounded fear that steroids will be a gateway to a life of cocaine addiction is not one of them.

  • American Physiological Society. (2019, April 8). Performance-enhancing drugs may increase risk of teen cocaine abuse, impair fertility: Exposure to anabolic steroids increased psychoactive effects of cocaine in rat study. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 8, 2019 from sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/04/190408113944.htm
  • Cathey, K. (2019, April 8). Performance-enhancing drugs can lead to cocaine addiction. Retrieved April 8, 2019 from earth.com/news/performance-enhancing-drugs-cocaine/
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Super Moderator
Sep 6, 2011
Here’s a big secret most people apparently don’t realize.....

The key thing that makes people cocaine addicts is........


initially however I suppose the thing that would be the true gateway is ......

the decision to do cocaine.


I now my response is just as stupid as the article but stupid is as stupid does.

If this study were in fact proven true.... the study doesn’t prove aas is a gateway drug for cocaine abuse.... it proves that perhaps cocaine is more addictive if you are a nandrolone user.

Again.... fml


Aug 23, 2014
News media = sensationalism, that's all they care generally! It has been proven numerous times, different government around the world use the news to influence ideas of the general population. I don't think it's different in the western world, we just have a better impression of control and freedom of opinion but in reality do we really?
Apr 7, 2019
So I’m very interested to see this study come to fruition (if it does). This isn’t published work, this is essentially a poster at a conference in Florida. One of the researchers most likely reached out to Science Daily about their work and Science Daily said they would write a piece about it, making it kind of click bait (happens all the time, my lab does it). If the study is simply injections/lever presses and looks at behaviors it won’t get published anywhere worth while. The criteria to make those claims requires some state of the art techniques, like opto genetics, DREADDs, electrophysiology, miniscope etc. doing that stuff gets you into larger more impactful journals, like Journal of Neuroscience, or Neuropsychopharmacology. But this type of study isn’t getting to the big 3 research journals Nature, Cell or Neuron.


Super Moderator
Apr 30, 2003
The Land of Snow
I was heavily into cocaine before I touched steroids, so I dispute this article

Blow is the precursor to anabolic abuse imo
So was I.
I saw this thing many years of doing mental health assessments. I often saw the parents of some kid in a psyche unit. They would wail about the dianabol they found. When I saw the kid, he would have been getting into mom's Valium, grandma's pain pills, dad's liquor locker, not to mention the hallucinogens he got at school. The Parents? It's the steroids.