Steroids are a class of drugs that are aimed at lowering inflammation, managing pain, and treating certain conditions. There are many factors that influence how long steroids stay in your system, so the period can vary a lot.
In the human body, steroids are secreted by certain glands, and they have many functions but the ones that are best known are cortisol and adrenaline that are commonly known as “stress hormones”.
There are two main types of steroids: Corticosteroids and anabolic steroids.
Due to their importance and applications, there are many drugs that contain steroids. Those most commonly used are Corticosteroids. These are used to treat a series of conditions among which:
- Rheumatoid arthritis;
- Allergic reactions;
- Sciatica Pain
Anabolic steroids are most commonly known amongst athletes, who illegally use them to grow muscles and achieve higher performance, ignoring the long-term side effects.
Steroids in the UK
In the United Kingdom, steroids are considered a class C drug, which means that you need a prescription in order to buy them.
Furthermore, it is illegal to sell them, but it’s not illegal to possess them even if you don’t have a prescription. But it is illegal if you want to offer or sell them to someone.
It’s legal to buy them without a prescription, but if buying them online you may not use the post or other delivery services or you will be risking spending time in jail.
The law is extremely strict because steroids cause addiction and a series of health conditions that can affect a person for a very long time, like osteoporosis, behavioral issues, infertility, and a higher risk of prostate cancer.
However, there are many people who use anabolic steroids in order to look better or to obtain better results, since buying them online is not illegal.
Corticosteroids, on the other hand, are very important for many conditions that are becoming more and more common the modern society, like allergies.
These too are strictly controlled and usually, doctors begin administering the lowest dose possible, in order to obtain the desired effect.
Corticosteroids can come in the form of injectable steroids, oral steroids, and topical steroids.
Topic steroids are creams and gels that can be applied to the skin. These are very rarely absorbed in the blood circulation and when they are the quantity is neglectable.
Injectable steroids can be administered through an IV, through an injection in the muscle, or in a specific place like the bursa of the knee or in the back.
Steroids that are administered in a bursa will stay there for longer, and the length of time, until they leave your system, is difficult to determine.
Oral steroids are usually given as a lengthy treatment. This means that they get the chance to build up and they will be more difficult to clear.
How long steroids stay in your system?
The period of time until you completely clear steroids from your system depend on:
- The exact steroid
- Your metabolic rate
- The health of your liver and kidneys
- How long you have been taking steroids for
Every type of steroid has a certain half-life that you can usually find in the product description. It’s just like a clock that starts counting backward once the substance has reached its peak level (not after you take it, but after it is completely absorbed).
Dexamethasone, for example, has a very long half-life of 36 to 72 hours. So, it might take up to 2 weeks for it to completely leave your system.
No matter why you need to learn about steroids, remember that any type of infection is a contraindication to using steroids, as these lower the immune response.
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