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Several hours after our post on increased media coverage of the potential danger of supplement use by high school athletes, the Food & Drug Administration held a press conference and issued a public health advisory on body-building products and steroids. The warning was serious: “Due to the potentially serious health risks associated with using these types of products, the FDA recommends that consumers immediately stop using all body building products that claim to contain steroids or steroid-like substances, ” the FDA said in the advisory.

The statement also reads: “Products like these are frequently marketed as alternatives to anabolic steroids for increasing muscle mass and strength and are sold both online and in retail stores.  They are often promoted to athletes to improve sports performance and to aid in recovery from training and sporting events.  Although products containing synthetic steroids are frequently marketed as dietary supplements, they are NOT dietary supplements, but instead are unapproved new drugs that have not been reviewed by the FDA for safety and effectiveness.”

The Council for Responsible Nutrition sent out an alert immediately following the FDA announcement, with phone numbers (866-359-3719 U.S. and 203-369-0144 international) for anyone to call and listen to a recording of the conference.

The seriousness of the FDA warning, coupled with heighten media exposure of the dangers that high school athletes face from taking steroids, may lead to action by regulators, sports associations and others. The heightened public awareness will likely lead to more consumer questions.


Joel B. Rothman represents clients in intellectual property infringement litigation involving patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, defamation, trade libel, unfair competition, unfair and deceptive trade practices, and commercial matters. Joel’s litigation practice also includes significant focus on electronic discovery issues such as e-discovery management and motion practice relating to e-discovery.