There are always athletes who feel the need to use steroids while playing sports. While many organizations prohibit the usage, the doctors in the sports medicine field tend to be the real people who are fighting the effects of steroids on a daily basis. Some of the most prevalent symptoms that sports medicine doctors are forced to deal with include mood swings, violent behavior, depression, and psychoses. The good news is that all of these symptoms are reversible with treatment once the use of the steroids stops; however some other conditions are not as easily reversed. The use of steroids can alter numerous systems in the body, and how they react in terms of permanent or temporary is very important in terms of working to treat the effects. As the number of athletes guilty of using steroids is steadily decreasing there are fewer problems that doctors are trying to counter, however the use of steroids is still happening which causes the problems to still persist even if at a slower level. While sports medicine doctors do not typically treat reproductive issues, they are finding themselves engaged in more aspects as the use of steroids can hinder several components. For example, in men it can alter the libido, as well as cause male pattern baldness and even cause impaired spermatogenesis amongst the other problems that include testicular atrophy and gynecomastia. However, of all of the problems, only male pattern baldness is entirely non-reversible with treatment. However, there are times when even gynecomastia is unable to be successfully treated once steroid use has been discontinued. Women tend to have greater reproductive problems with the use of steroids with the risks causing problems with menstrual cycles, an altered libido, deepened voice, pattern baldness, and even clitoral enlargement. The good news is that the libido as well as menstrual cycle can be restored, while the other results of steroid use at this point are not a reversible complication. This means that each year, women who stop taking steroids are still left with the results to deal with, much more so than men are. Steroids also have the unfortunate problem of negatively affecting the cardiovascular system, which in athletes much be as healthy as possible in order to achieve the best results. With increased LDL cholesterol levels, reduced HDL cholesterol levels, as well as complications with hypertension, elevated triglycerides and even the potential of arteriosclerotic heart disease the use of steroids has several devastating effects on the athletes overall health. While there are rare and few doctors who will encourage the use of steroids, a well trained doctor will be able to identify signs that an athlete is using steroids and will do their best to help discourage their usage. While obviously the final choice on using steroids lies with the athlete, a good sports medicine doctor should be able to identify based on signs, which athletes are using. Because of the risks associated with the cardiovascular system as well as musculoskeletal system, using steroids can actually cause more harm to the body than it can provide in benefits. In addition to the complications associated with the cardiovascular system that were already discussed, it can create complications with tendon degeneration, which is potentially not reversible. This creates a huge problem with weakened tendons that are much more susceptible to injury even after steroid use has stopped. Overall, steroid use represents a huge problem to sports medicine doctors all around the world.
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