Believe to Achieve
Jay Cutler's house
Hard and Heavy
Guide to Abscess prevention
Oh my god, what the hell is that lump in my ass? Damnit; it is huge, red,
swollen and burning to the touch, wtf is this? I hope this has never happened to
any of you but if it has, this article is written as a prevention article about
abscesses as well as covering procedures if it does happen.
So what is an
abscess? An abscess is a localized collection of pus in any part of the body,
usually caused by an infection. Abscesses develop when an area of tissue becomes
infected and the body is able to prevent the infection and keep if from
spreading. During this process �pus� forms, which is an accumulation of fluid,
living and dead white blood cells, dead bacteria or other foreign invaders or
Most abscesses are septic (caused by infection) but sterile
abscesses can also occur which are not caused by germs but by non-living
irritants such as drugs. If an injected drug, especially oil based ones such as
anabolic steroids are not fully absorbed, it stays where it was injected and may
cause enough irritation to generate a sterile abscess. Sterile abscesses are
likely to turn into hard, solid lumps as they scar, rather than pockets of pus.
Superficial abscesses are readily visible and as stated above, are red,
swollen, painful and warm. Abscesses in other areas of the body may not be
obvious and may produce only generalized symptoms such as fever and discomfort.
A sterile abscess may cause only a painful lump, for example deep gluteus
injections. If the abscess is small enough, � inch or less, applying warm
compresses/hot soaks to the area for about 30 minutes ed can
Sometimes though, it will not disperse and you need medical
attention. At this point a culture or examination of any drainage from the
lesion will help identify what is causing the abscess. The infection can spread
to the tissues under the skin and eventually enter the bloodstream, resulting in
septicaemia which can be very serious and life threatening. Unlike other
infections, antibiotics alone will not cure a well developed abscess. In general
an abscess must be cut open and drained by a doctor in order for it to
Once the sore has drained, the doctor will insert some packing into
the remaining cavity to minimize any bleeding and keep it open for a day or two.
With time the cavity will heal, but you can expect to be out of the gym for
weeks. When it does heal, scar tissue will form, therefore, no more injections
in that area.
Infection can be a problem with any type of injection, due
to the nature of having to transverse though the protective barrier of the skin.
It is extremely important to inject under sterile and sanitary conditions to
avoid transmitting infectious foreign organisms into the body. The most common
infective complication when injecting Anabolic Steroids is an
Researchers Rich et al. (1999) report of a case of a 26 year old
anabolic steroid user who did not use sterile injection techniques and wound up
with an injection-related thigh abscess. This individual reported sharing
multi-dosage vials with two other weightlifting colleagues who also developed
infections. It took approximately 3-4 months and a trip to the emergency room to
control the infection and begin healing.
Two cases of thigh abscesses
were discovered in male and female professional weight lifters who injected a
veterinary preparation of stanozolol contaminated with Mycobacterium smegmatis.
Two case reports of staphylococcal gluteal abscesses developed in young
bodybuilders 18 and 21 years of age.
Reported infections associated with
anabolic-androgenic steroid injection include abscesses attributable to
Mycobacterium smegmatis, Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, and Pseudomonas
organisms as well as HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C. These infections are
primarily related to nonsterile injection technique, shared injection equipment,
and are avoidable with appropriate prevention techniques. Education is needed to
prevent infectious complications such as abscesses and blood-borne pathogens
among anabolic-androgenic steroid injectors.
The Steroid Control Act of
1990 removed the ability of medical doctor�s to prescribe and monitor steroid
use in athletes. This has lead to a boom in black market products, most of which
are of questionable quality and are often produced under unsterile manufacturing
conditions. Most bodybuilders do not have the means or education necessary to
recognize counterfeits or have all of their drugs tested in a laboratory for
purity. As a result, people are gambling with their health by using steroids
they procure from black market sources. Sometimes the product is fairly pure and
the user experiences the expected results. Then again, how often do you hear
about a bodybuilder doing a cycle and experiencing none of the expected gains?
Usually the guy feels too foolish to tell everybody, "Hey everybody, look at
what a fool I am. I just spent a ton of money on steroids, bought them from
someone I didn�t know personally, and they turned out to be fake! In fact, I
have no idea what I just injected into my body over the last several weeks!"
This is not the kind of thing an aspiring young bodybuilder brags
Sometimes the mysterious oil in the bottle is innocuous; sometimes
it contains infectious agents such as rare bacteria and toxic chemicals. There
are several reports in the literature of bodybuilders getting abscesses from
"atypical bacteria". Atypical bacteria are ubiquitous in the environment, are
able to survive for prolonged periods without nutrients, such as in a vial of
steroids, and are very capable of causing difficult to treat infections at the
site of injection.
A word of caution is all I offer. There are proper
ways of administering injectable drugs that reduce the risk of infection. There
are also life saving precautions that must be taken by bodybuilders using
steroids such as not sharing needles and not sharing multi-dose vials. If you
are willing to put in the effort and pay the price to get illegal injectable
steroids, at least take the time to educate yourself about the proper way to
administer them as well as the risks involved with their use.
to take when injecting anabolic steroids:
1) Inject under strict sanitary
conditions, this means not in your dirty ass bathroom you haven�t clean in a
year or near your dirty laundry and sweat socks.
2) Use correct
injection technique, inject intramuscularly, aspirate the syringe and use large
main, muscle groups only.
3) Avoid sharing or reusing needles. Sharing is
for junkies, don�t do it. As for reusing, needles are cheap and readily
available right here on our board so don�t do it. Use one needle for withdraw
and then remove, put on a new needle and inject.
4) Make sure your skin
is clean. Inject right after a shower or use an alcohol swab/wipe to clean the
area as well as the top of all multi-injection vials.
5) Check your
source for legit products. Some UG gear is made in horrible locations that are
not sanitary, do some research to make sure what you are putting in your body is
legit and well manufactured.
Evans, NA. Local complications
of self administered anabolic steroid injections. Br J sports Med. 1997 Dec;
Al-Ismail K et al. Gluteal mass in a bodybuilder; radiological
depiction of a complication of steroid use. Eur Radiol. 2002 Jun; 12(6); 1366-9
Plaus WJ, Hermann G. The surgical management of superficial infections
caused by atypical myobacteria. Surgery. 1991; 110: 99-105
Maropis C, Yesalis
CE. Intramuscular abscess; another anabolic steroid danger. They Physician and
Sports Medicine. 1994; 22:105-110
TheDoctor. MuscleTalk.co.uk. Injections
and Infections. 2005. article.asp
Rich et al. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 31(2)