Pregnant women who use steroids risk passing on male traits to unborn daughters due to the increased male hormones in their bloodstream. The only way to avoid the risk of fetal damage is to stop using steroids at least 4 months before falling pregnant, as well as during pregnancy.
Side effects in Young people
Young men are more likely than young women to use steroids to gain weight and muscle mass. The risks of the following side effects are higher if steroids are injected by young men in their late teens/ early 20s, before they have stopped growing:
• Stunted growth • Premature balding • Acne scarring • Stretch marks on chest and arms • Prematurely-aged, ‘leathery’ skin • Injuries from excessively intense gym workouts
Injecting steroids can cause permanent nerve damage, which can lead to sciatica. Injecting in unhygienic environments or sharing equipment with others also increases the risk of contracting HIV/AIDS, tetanus or Hepatitis C or B.