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J Am Board Fam Pract. 1993 Jul-Aug;6(4):341-5.

Rate of anabolic-androgenic steroid use among students in junior high school.

Author information

Department of Family Medicine, Hennepin County Medical Center, Minneapolis, MN.

Erratum in

  • J Am Board Fam Pract 1993 Nov-Dec;6(6):616.



Anabolic-androgenic steroid use has become an increasingly large problem. Studies document steroid use in high-school students, but not students in junior high school. We surveyed 7th-grade students to assess rate of use and knowledge about steroids.


Seventh-grade students completed a 22-question survey instrument that addressed previous steroid use, knowledge about the effects of steroids, other previous substance abuse, and demographic data. The one-sided Z test was used for statistical analyses.


There were 4.7 percent of the male students and 3.2 percent of the female students who admitted to using steroids [corrected]. Those more likely to have tried steroids included African-Americans (P < 0.05), 15-year-olds (P < 0.05), football players (P < 0.025), wrestlers (P < 0.005), and past users of alcohol (P < 0.005) or tobacco (P < 0.005). There were significant differences between steroid users and nonusers in knowledge about the effects of anabolic-androgenic steroids on the body: steroid users knew less than nonusers.


The establishment of steroid use in junior high school should cause physicians to seek signs or history of steroid use, especially in patients who are members of groups more likely to use them. In addition, physicians should initiate dialogue about steroids with patients before they are likely to have tried them.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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