ERIC Number: ED339932
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1990
Reference Count: N/A
Adolescent Steroid Use.
Office of Inspector General (DHHS), Washington, DC.
The study focused on non-medical steroid use by adolescents according to data obtained from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, professional literature, 30 key informants knowledgeable in steroid issues, and 72 current or former steroid users. The findings indicated: (1) over 250,000 adolescents, primarily males, used or have used steroids, and the number is growing; (2) over half the adolescents who use steroids have tried them for the first time by age 16; (3) steroid users, in general, are highly motivated people who train intensely to improve themselves or to achieve a positive goal and who believe they are health conscious; (4) adolescents have a special susceptibility to the health risks of stunted growth and adverse psychological effects including dependence; (5) steroid use encourages adolescents to try other drugs for enhancing performance and countering the side effects of steroid use; (6) experts do not believe adolescents are well aware of the potential risks of steroid use, nor is awareness a deterrent to use; and (7) many key informants supported drug testing as a deterrent to adolescent steroid use, but the cost is a serious drawback. From these findings two recommendations emerged: (1) the Department of Health and Human Services should develop a national education strategy to increase adult and adolescent awareness of the problem and to provide educational guidelines for local programs; and (2) the Department, through the Public Health Service, should take the lead in expanding federal understanding of the motivations for the health risks of non-medical steroid use as a basis for informed policy decisions. (LLL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Office of Inspector General (DHHS), Washington, DC.