Potential side effects are different between men and women. Common effects seen in men is jaundice, baldness, acne, breast tissue development, permanent liver damage and/or liver tumors and heart problems. Common side effects for women include jaundice, permanent deepening of their voice, increased facial hair, acne, permanent liver damage, heart problems and problems with their menstrual cycle. This list is not exhaustive, there are several other short and long-term side effects that are caused by steroid use. Most of the effects will gradually get better after cessation of the drug. However, there are grave and permanent risks involved whether the anabolic steroid is taken orally or with an injection.
Awareness and educational efforts are working to help prevent anabolic steroid abuse in schools and communities. The Adolescents Training and Learning to Avoid Steroids (ATLAS) and the Athletes Targeting Healthy Exercise and Nutrition Alternatives (ATHENA) programs, funded by the NIDA, and supported by the Oregon Health & Science University programs is teaching athletes that they do not need steroids to build powerful muscles and improve athletic performance. These programs provide weight-training and nutrition alternatives, increase healthy behaviors, less likelihood to try steroids, and less likelihood to engage in other dangerous behaviors such as drinking and driving, use of marijuana and alcohol , and and improved body image. Bother Congress and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration endorsed these model prevention programs. 4