In the athletes the wide use of Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AAS) cause series damage in various organs, in particular, analyzing the liver, elevation on the levels of liver enzymes, cholestatic jaundice, liver tumors, both benign and malignant, and peliosis hepatis are described. A prolonged AAS administration provokes an increase in the activities of liver lysosomal hydrolases and a decrease in some components of the microsomal drug-metabolizing system and in the activity of the mitochondrial respiratory chain complexes without modifying classical serum indicators of hepatic function. Liver is a key organ actively involved in numerous metabolic and detoxifying functions. As a consequence, it is continuously exposed to high levels of endogenous and exogenous oxidants that are by-products of many biochemical pathways and, in fact, it has been demonstrated that intracellular oxidant production is more active in liver than in tissues, like the increase of inflammatory cytokines, apoptosis and the inhibitors of apoptosis NF- κB and Heat Shock Proteins.
For several decades, testosterone and its synthetic derivatives have been used with anabolic and androgenic purposes. These substances were first restricted to professional bodybuilders, but become more and more popular among recreational athletes. Up to date, 3,000,000 anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS) users have been reported in the United States with an increasing prevalence, making AAS consumption a major public health growing concern. Infertility is defined by the WHO as the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse and a male factor is present in up to 50 % of all infertile couples. Several conditions may be related to male infertility. Substance abuse, including AAS, is commonly associated to transient or persistent impairment on male reproductive function, through different pathways. Herein, a brief overview on AAS is offered. Steroids biochemistry, patterns of use, physiological and clinical issues are enlightened. A further review about fertility outcomes among male AAS abusers is also presented, including the classic reports on transient anabolic steroid-induced hypogonadism (ASIH), and the more recent experimental reports on structural and genetic sperm damage.