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Anabolic steroids are synthetic derivatives of testosterone. Certain clinical effects and adverse reactions demonstrate the androgenic properties of this class of drugs. Complete dissociation of anabolic and androgenic effects has not been achieved. The actions of anabolic steroids are therefore similar to those of male sex hormones with the possibility of causing serious disturbances of growth and sexual development if given to young children. Anabolic steroids suppress the gonadotropic functions of the pituitary and may exert a direct effect upon the testes.
During exogenous administration of anabolic androgens, endogenous testosterone release is inhibited through inhibition of pituitary luteinizing hormone (LH). At large doses, spermatogenesis may be suppressed through feedback inhibition of pituitary follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH).
Anabolic steroids have been reported to increase low-density lipoproteins and decrease high-density lipoproteins. These levels revert to normal on discontinuation of treatment.
In a single dose pharmacokinetic study of Oxandrin (oxandrolone) in elderly subjects, the mean elimination half-life was 13.3 hours. In a previous single dose pharmacokinetic study in younger volunteers, the mean elimination half-life was 10.4 hours. No significant differences between younger and elderly volunteers were found for time to peak, peak plasma concentration or AUC after a single dose of Oxandrin (oxandrolone) . The correlation between plasma level and therapeutic effect has not been defined.
Last reviewed on RxList: 3/31/2009
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
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