Facts About Steroids and Hormones Side Effects
In an effort to treat serious diseases, medical researchers have developed a large number of steroid and hormones. As an important part of these research efforts, a variety of laboratory animal models have been developed to investigate the possible side effects associated with long term and repeated use of different medications containing synthetic hormones, including steroids.
A steroid is a chemically active natural compound with three rings arranged together in a special molecular structure. The three rings serve as one active ingredient that interacts with a receptor to modify its receptor mobility, fluidity, and other characteristics. Steroids also have two primary biological functions: they increase tissue fluidity and alter cell membrane fluidity.
Among the common and most common types of steroids are prednisone, nsaids, and testosterone. These are the most commonly used and the most popularly prescribed drugs to treat osteoporosis, hypertension, arthritis, diabetes, and cancer. However, as many as 40% of people who take them may experience some type of side effect, including hypertension, osteoporosis, kidney disease, liver damage, sexual dysfunction, and even an increased risk of heart disease or stroke. In some studies, it has been shown that the occurrence of side effects may be linked to improper use of these drugs.
Most common side effects of steroids are liver damage, increased blood pressure, inflammation, and edema (swelling of the legs). Other side effects include allergic reactions, depression, decreased libido, insomnia, loss of muscle strength and energy, impotence, and an increase in the risk of heart disease. Some studies also indicate that steroids may also increase the risk of certain cancers, including breast cancer.
While all steroids cause side effects, there are specific classes of steroid and hormones that are known to be more dangerous than others. For example, corticosteroids such as prednisone, prednisolone, methylprednisolone, hydrocortisone, and cortisone, all act as anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer agents, but they are also thought to cause gastrointestinal issues. Oral glucocorticoids, which include prednisone, hydrocortisone, methylprednisolone, act as glucocorticoid receptors that bind to glucocorticoid receptors, and prevent their production by the pituitary gland. Oral mineralocorticoids are the hormones produced in the kidney and adrenal glands and other organs that prevent excessive production of cortisol and corticosteroids.
Steroid and hormones can also interfere with other medications that patients are taking, so it is best to avoid taking any medication that contains them if possible, especially when taken together. It is especially important to avoid steroids while taking insulin, thyroid, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID), or antibiotics. A doctor should also discuss the use of steroids with patients before starting or stopping any medications.
If you are experiencing any type of symptoms from the steroids or any steroid and hormone related problems, it is important to contact a doctor as soon as possible. Your doctor may prescribe another form of treatment to help relieve your symptoms.
Steroid and hormone side effects have been linked to several diseases and medical conditions. When taken for extended periods of time, steroids and other medications can lead to the following: liver damage, kidney damage, diabetes, breast cancer, increased cholesterol levels, and increased risk of heart disease, and, in extreme cases, an increased risk of cancer of the prostate or bladder. These side effects can occur at any age, and at any point in a person’s life.
To avoid these side effects, talk with your doctor about what medications, if any, to take. The most common side effects are loss of appetite, weight gain, acne, joint pain, hair loss, fluid retention, nausea, muscle pain, dizziness, insomnia, and depression.
When symptoms do occur, talk to your doctor right away about your steroid and hormone side effect and what you can do to treat it. Your doctor will be able to recommend medications to help reduce your symptoms and to help your body recover from any of the side effects of steroids. Your doctor may be able to recommend surgery or a drug therapy program that will address all of your symptoms.
If you are experiencing a steroid and hormone related symptom and are not sure what type of treatment is best for you, talk to your doctor about it. In some cases, steroids may need to be stopped temporarily in order to relieve your symptoms, or to treat your underlying problem. If you are experiencing severe symptoms such as these or other health concerns, talk to your doctor about a referral to a specialist.