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(stēr'oydz, ster-),
A large family of chemical substances, comprising many hormones, body constituents, and drugs, each containing the tetracyclic cyclopenta[a]phenanthrene skeleton. Stereoisomerism among steroids is not only common but of critical biologic significance. The nomenclature conventions are that the nucleus is presented as if projected onto the plane of the paper, with groups then lying above that plane being denoted by thickened bonds and called β and those then lying below that plane being denoted by broken bonds and called α; the letter ξ indicates unknown or unspecified orientation. The principal classes of steroids, with the names for the unsubstituted, saturated hydrocarbon forms that are clearly related to physiologic functions or sources are: 1) gonanes (in which the methyl groups C-18 and C-19, have been replaced by H), 2) estranes (in which the C-19 methyl groups have been replaced by H), 3) androstanes (equivalent to Formula II), 4) norandrostanes (in which one of the methyl groups, typically C-18, has been replaced by H), 5) cholanes (with -CH(CH3)(CH2)2CH3 bonded to C-17), 6) cholestanes (with -CH(CH3)(CH2)3CH(CH3)2 at C-17, 7) ergostanes (with -CH(CH3)(CH2)2CH(CH3)CH(CH3)2 at C-17), and 8) stigmastanes (with -CH(CH3)(CH2)2CH(CH2CHCH3)CH(CH3)2 at C-17). In addition, each of the classes can be in a 5α or 5β series.
The steroid derivatives known as cardanolides are androstanes with a 5-membered lactone linked to C-17. The squill-toad poisons known as the bufanolides are androstanes with a 6-membered lactone linked to C-17. Spirostans and furostans (the basic structures of many "genins," including the sapogenins) are androstanes having certain cyclic ether moieties.
The natural and synthetic derivatives are named by adding conventional chemical prefixes and suffixes for substituents; for example, -ol for a hydroxyl group, -on(e) for a keto group, -al for an aldehyde group. "Nor" indicates loss of a -CH2- group; "homo," the addition of a -CH2- group; each is preceded by the letter indicating which ring is contracted or expanded, respectively, or, in the case where the -CH2- is lost from a methyl group, the number of the carbon atom lost. "Seco" indicates fission of a ring with the addition of hydrogen atoms at the positions indicated by numerals preceding the term. Unsaturation is denoted, as usual, by substituting appropriate terms, for example, -en(e), -yn(e), -adien(e), for the -ane or -an parts of the hydrocarbon or parent class names, with numerals indicating locations of the unsaturated bonds. The locations of double bonds are specified by the lower of the two (consecutive) numbers of the carbon atoms involved. When a double bond is formed between two nonconsecutive carbon atoms, the second is indicated in parentheses after the first; for example, estriol and the estradiols possess three double bonds, between C-1 and C-2, between C-3 and C-4, and between C-5 and C-10, respectively.
Steroid alkaloids may be named from the steroid parent, as above, or from trivial family names usually ending in -anine if the steroid is saturated or in -enine, -adienine, etc., if it is not saturated (for example, conanine, tomatanine).
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


A large family of chemical substances, comprising many hormones, body constituents, and drugs.
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012


A group of drugs that includes the corticosteroids, similar to hormones produced by the adrenal glands, and used to relieve inflammation and itching.
Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Patient discussion about Steroids

Q. Does steroids make children shorter? My 10 years-old son has asthma, and is treated with a steroid inhaler. Will this treatment cause him to be shorter in the future?

A. I don't think so. My cousin had asthma very badly when he was young, and he grew up to be tall, strong and healthy, thank goodness. Sometimes one does outgrow this, sometimes now, but as far as growth goes, I don't think it will stump growth.

Q. what sort of diet should I take to tone up my muscle and to lose fat in my body? Is steroid a good idea?

A. as williams41 say- it's a BAD idea... steroids wil damage your body immune system and can get you more prone to bacterial/virus/fungal attacks. it also have unhealthy side effects that one of them is distribution of fat in the face area that can be unpleasant. so consider your steps...

Q. Had FMS for almost twenty years now, tried almost everything. Is Lyrica in the "steroid" family? Any one in this community could help me? I have given my few questions to find out an answer. I Had FMS for almost twenty years now, tried almost everything. I'm considering Lyrica but I'd like more info. Is Lyrica in the "steroid" family? If you go on Lyrica for a while & see no improvement with pain, is going off of it a big deal like with other med's, or can you simply just stop taking it? I take Ambien, will that have any interactions? I'm seeing my Doc about this at the end of the month, but I was hoping to get some personal experiences about it. Thanks for any thoughts! Thanks for your answers, keep them coming!

A. according to this-
there is a moderate interaction. that means you can take them both but be checked regularly for depression of breath.

More discussions about Steroids
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References in periodicals archive ?
DeMicco notes that spinal steroid injections typically should be done in a dedicated surgical suite with the guidance of X-ray fluoroscopy, preferably in conjunction with digital subtraction angiography.
During the fall, the DEA in Newark, New Jersey, received information about an operation involving making and distributing anabolic steroids from, a retail website that advertises the sale of testosterone and other illegal steroids.
After 40 years, the use or withdrawal of steroids following kidney transplantation remains a somewhat controversial issue.
Also it was raised another issue by the national team player, "Waleed Ali" for anti -doping, who was a user of anabolic steroids, where they were taking a sample of Al- Arabi defenders "Mohammed Freeh" and "Ahmed Ibrahim," and Al- Jahra guard "Satam al-Husseini" and the defender, "Hammoud Melfi to subject them for doping examination, after the end of the game.
Looking forward to know about steroid cycles as a beginner who has an aim of bodybuilding?
By this stage, the skin so damaged through the use of topical steroids becomes very sensitive to any external stimulant or allergen.
In the findings, 30.4% said they used steroids, 74.3% of users were aged 22-35 years old and 70.2% of users said they were aware of the side effects.
Ideally, steroids should not be prescribed without the prescription of a registered medical doctor.
In women, steroid use can cause facial and body hair growth, a deepened voice, problems with periods and hair loss.
The NHS warns that anabolic steroids, which are manufactured drugs that mimic the effects of the male hormone testosterone, are prescription-only medicines which are sometimes taken without medical advice to increase muscle mass and improve athletic performance.
Steroids that can help with an immune problem, however, can also lower your cat's resistance to pathogens.

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