Steroids mixing with different drugs?
Which are safe and which not?
Overall steroids are quite safe even when taken with other drugs, and adverse interaction with other drugs is rare. Nonetheless, they may increase or decrease working of some medications. Further, one must know that there is something unexplained called idiosyncrasy, which means that in some individual’s side effects/drug interactions may occur for no apparent reasons.
Since steroids are taken to increase mass, muscular strength, they generally have a positive interaction with anti-cancer drugs, and drugs used to treat anemia. Steroids may also help to fight HIV infection related wasting. However, they are also known to increase the breakdown of certain medications like those used in various heart conditions (especially anticoagulants) or to treat diabetes.
Below we sum up the possible interaction of steroids with some of the most commonly used medications and street drugs:
- Cocaine- direct interaction with steroids is absent; steroids may change the psychological behavior. Those using steroids for the long term may become more aggressive and are more inclined to use street drugs. Mixing of cocaine with steroids may have unpredictable psychological consequences, as steroids may increase the effect of cocaine a bit.
- Amphetamines- are stimulants of the central nervous system. They do not mix well with steroids. Those on steroids may also have higher levels of estrogen in the blood, which is known to increase the euphoric effect of amphetamines.
- Antibiotics- are most commonly used drugs to treat various bacterial infections. Fortunately, none of the antimicrobials have any bad reaction when used with steroids. However, antibiotics belong to different chemical classes, and thus precaution must still be taken.
- Aspirin and other anti-inflammatory drugs- are used to treat painful conditions or low dose aspirin may be used as a blood thinner. No direct negative interaction of these class of drugs with anabolic steroids is known.
- Benzodiazepines- some studies suggest that anabolic steroid may interact with the peripheral benzodiazepine receptors (PBRs) and thus reducing the effectiveness of these drugs.
- Beta-blockers and other antihypertensive- are used to treat higher blood pressure. No direct negative interaction between anabolic steroids and these class of drugs is known. However, anabolic steroids may increase water and sodium retention, thus reducing the effectiveness of therapy with these drugs.
- Opiates, SSRIs other antidepressants- none of them have any negative direct interaction with steroids. However, it must be understood that anabolic steroids do cause changes in mood, a person may be more inclined to depression when not using anabolic steroids (off-cycle, or PCT). These mood swings caused due to use and disuse of anabolic steroids may make a person more prone to side effects of drugs used to treat psychological conditions, and thus may have unpredictable consequences.
- Tylenol/Paracetamol/acetaminophen- is the most commonly used painkiller due to its excellent safety profile. Though there is no direct interaction between Tylenol and anabolic steroids. Nonetheless one must avoid using too much of Tylenol while on steroids as it would result in increased stress on the liver.
In general, steroids are quite safe when used along with other drugs. However, one must still practice caution as specific unforeseen interactions may occur due to the metabolic stimulating effect of steroids, along with their effects on human psychology.