The Steroid Confusion

By Judith Mariposa on Saturday, May 30, 2015

Simply put the human body is capable of making all of these, but they are not all created equal. Additionally, pharmacology can re-create these, for varying needs.

Steroids –

“Commercially produced corticosteroids are steroids that reduce inflammation. They include hydrocortisone, prednisone, dexamethasone, triamcinolone, budesonide, betamethasone, fluticasone, and flunisolide. The FDA has approved more than 100 corticosteroids for patient use. They are used in pills, ointments, inhalers, and by injection to treat diseases that cause inflammation, including multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and other autoimmune diseases. They also are used to treat many skin conditions, and leukemia and other cancers.

Corticosteroids are very important in the treatment of asthma and COPD. They help to reduce inflammation in the lungs’ airways. A health care provider can prescribe them in various forms. Most people use the inhaled form because it has fewer side effects.

Rarely people experience side effects, like thrush after using inhaled steroids. But, cleansing the mouth with water after use can reduce this oral yeast infection. When taken over a long period of time, oral corticosteroids also can have side effects, like weight gain, ulcers, high blood glucose and cataracts. But, when taking the recommended dosage under a health care provider’s supervision, they are considered safe.” 1

 

Sterols –  “The most commonly known of these is cholesterol. Other sterols help your body to make vitamin D from sunlight and to build cell walls.” 1  Those with auto-immunes may find they have difficulty producing and utilizing Vitamin D.

Anabolic Steroids –

“Anabolic steroids are male hormones like testosterone or commercially produced chemicals identical to male hormones. When produced naturally by the body, they increase muscle mass and direct proteins to make muscle. As men age, their testosterone production may decrease resulting in mood changes or loss of bone density. Testosterone is sometimes prescribed to treat low testosterone levels. Anabolic steroids are also commonly taken and abused by athletes to boost athletic performance and build muscle mass. Some teenagers abuse them, too.

Taking doses of anabolic steroids beyond the body’s normal level increases the risk for prostate cancer, stroke, and heart attack. People who take unnecessary doses of anabolic steroids may display violent behavior and drastic mood swings. They may also suffer from depression. Unfortunately, they can cause lasting damage, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.” 1

 

1. http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?ContentTypeID=1&ContentID=2818