Anabolic androgenic steroid dependence is associated with impaired emotion recognition

Anabolic androgenic steroid dependence is associated with impaired emotion recognition / Lisa E. Hauger, Dominic Sagoe, Anja Vaskinn Espen A. Arnevik, Siri Leknes, Marie L. Jørstad, Astrid Bjørnebekk. - (Psychopharmacology (2019) 2 April; p. 1-10).
- PMID: 30941469.
- DOI: 10.1007/s00213-019-05239-7
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Abstract

Rationale:
Illicit use of anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS) has grown into a serious public health concern throughout the Western World. AAS use is associated with adverse medical, psychological, and social consequences. Around 30% of AAS users develop a dependence syndrome with sustained use despite adverse side effects. AAS dependence is associated with a high frequency of intra- and interpersonal problems, and it is central to identify factors related to the development and maintenance of dependence.

Methods:
The present study investigated the ability to recognize emotion from biological motion. The emotional biological motion task was administered to male AAS dependent users (AAS dependents; n = 45), AAS non-dependent users (AAS non-dependents; n = 38) and a comparison-group of non-using weightlifters (non-users; n = 69).

Results:
Multivariate analysis of variance showed a general impairment in emotion recognition in AAS dependents, compared to the non-using weightlifters, whereas no significant impairment was observed in AAS non-dependents. Furthermore, AAS dependents showed impaired recognition of fearful stimuli compared to both AAS non-dependents and non-using weightlifters. The between-group effect remained significant after controlling for Intelligence Quotient (IQ), past 6 months of non-AAS drug use, antisocial personality problems, anxiety, and depression.

Conclusions:
AAS dependents show impaired emotion recognition from body movement, fear in particular, which could potentially contribute to higher frequency of interpersonal problems and antisocial behaviors in this population.

KEYWORDS:

Anabolic androgenic steroids; Body language; Dependence; Emotion processing; Emotion recognition; Social cognition; Testosterone

Parameters:

Science
Study
Date:
2 April 2019
People
Arnevik, Espen A.
Bjørnebekk, Astrid
Hauger, Lisa E.
Jørstad, Marie L.
Leknes, Siri
Sagoe, Dominic
Vaskinn, Anja
Country
Norway
Language
English
Other organisations
Oslo universitetssykehus HF - Oslo University Hospital
Universitetet i Bergen - University of Bergen
Doping classes
S1. Anabolic Agents
Substances
Testosterone
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Addiction / dependence
Health effects
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  • ADRV
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  • Sport/IFs
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  • Analytical aspects
  • Doping classes
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