Anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS) were initially created for therapeutic purposes, and synthetic derivatives of the male hormone testosterone. Due its great anabolic effects, these drugs are being used on a large scale, for the improvement of sports performance. In this present study, we aim to show the history of it’ use, present their mechanisms of action, more particularly its use correlate with improved body composition, muscle mass, aerobic capacity and verify their possible side effects, analyzing their use therapeutic and indiscriminate, through direct scientific research with the sports. Sources were reviewed scientific the following search engines: PUBMED, LILACS and SCIELO. The results showed that in presence of a suitable AAS and diet can contribute to increases in body weight, particularly lean body mass and muscle strength gains achieved by high intensity exercise, these effects can be further potentiated, the use of supraphysiological doses, but in the aspect of aerobic power, there are not scientific evidence to support their improvement. Regarding side effects, the use of AAS, is related to several complications in the liver, cardiovascular system, reproductive system and psychological characteristics, always assigned by the non-therapeutic and abuse of AAS. Thus we conclude that the use of AAS, are directly linked to gains muscle mass, strength, as well several side effects, always assigned to abusive and indiscriminate doses, it is noteworthy that the scientific literature, still has a certain lack of studies, mainly randomized, controlled, with supraphysiological doses in human, so many effects are still unknown.
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Laws and Penalties: Concerns over growing illegal AAS abuse by teenagers, and many of the just discussed long-term effects, led Congress in 1991 to place the whole AAS class of drugs into Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Under this legislation, AAS are defined as any drug or hormonal substance, chemically and pharmacologically related to T (other than estrogens, progestins, and corticosteroids) that promotes muscle growth. The possession or sale of AAS without a valid prescription is illegal. Since 1991, simple possession of illegally obtained AAS carry a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a minimum $1,000 fine if this is an individual’s first drug offense. The maximum penalty for trafficking (selling or possessing enough to be suspected of selling) is five years in prison and a fine of $250,000 if this is the individual’s first felony drug offense. If this is the second felony drug offense, the maximum period of imprisonment and the maximum fine both double. While the above listed penalties are for federal offenses, individual states have also implemented fines and penalties for illegal use of AAS. State executive offices have also recognized the seriousness of AAS abuse and other drugs of abuse in schools. For example, the State of Virginia enacted a law that will allow student drug testing as a legitimate school drug prevention program (48, 49).