The legal status of anabolic steroids varies from country to country. In the ., anabolic steroids are listed as Schedule III controlled substances under the Controlled Substances Act , which makes the possession of such substances without a prescription a federal crime punishable by up to seven years in prison.  In Canada, anabolic steroids and their derivatives are part of the Controlled drugs and substances act and are Schedule IV substances, meaning that it is illegal to obtain or sell them without a prescription. However, possession is not punishable, a consequence reserved for schedule I, II or III substances. Those guilty of buying or selling anabolic steroids in Canada can be imprisoned for up to 18 months. Importing or exporting anabolic steroids also carry similar penalties.  Anabolic steroids are also illegal without prescription in Australia,  Argentina, Brazil, and Portugal,  and are listed as Schedule 4 Controlled Drugs in the United Kingdom.
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Anabolic-androgenic steroid (AAS) withdrawal is established to be an important, though poorly known medical problem, because of AAS potency to cause physical and psychological dependence. Thus discontinuation of high-dose, long-term anabolic steroid use, apart from endocrine dysfunction (hypogonadotropic hypogonadism), may lead to development of withdrawal symptoms. They include mood disorders (with suicidal depression as the most life-threatening complication), insomnia, anorexia, decreased libido, fatigue, headache, muscle and joint pain, and desire to take more steroids. The withdrawal from anabolic steroids usually requires treatment. Clinical management, as with other drugs of abuse, consists of supportive therapy and pharmacotherapy. The goals of treatment are to restore endocrine (hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal, HPG) function and to alleviate withdrawal symptoms. The endocrine medications that are targeted specifically to ameliorate HPG function include testosterone esters, human chorionic gonadotropin, synthetic analogues of gonadotropin-releasing hormone and antiestrogens. They are indicated in the presence of persistent clinical symptoms or/and laboratory evidence of HPG dysfunction. Other medications, that are targeted to provide symptomatic relief include antidepressants (especially serotonin selective re-uptake inhibitors), nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and clonidine. Notwithstanding, it should be remembered that many of the above mentioned drugs have their own potential for abuse or side-effects, so their use must be carefully weighted and optimal treatment strategies for AAS withdrawal must await further clinical research.