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The Municipality of Abu Dhabi recently confiscated a large quantity of steroids and other banned drugs found during random inspections made at health clubs and fitness centres in the capital, a statement sent by the municipality announced yesterday.

The seized drugs, which included hormone drugs and unlicensed steroids, have been sent to the Health Authority Abu Dhabi (HAAD) to assess the level of risk they pose to public health and safety, the statement said.

Steroids are known to increase the risk of cardiovascular and liver disease. This risk is compounded because these drugs are often injected with the help of unsterilised syringes, which can subsequently cause HIV, hepatitis C and bacterial infections in the user.

Since the organisations from which the banned items were seized were only licensed as fitness centres, the municipal statement said that the centres were also at fault of practising unlicensed activities within their premises.

Khalifa Al Rumaithi, director of public health at the municipality, urged all residents and especially youngsters to abstain from using steroids and other drugs without an accompanying medical prescription.

“The municipality will continue to raise awareness about the risk of using such items, as well as take legal action against any violators. We therefore urge the public to report any fitness centres or suppliers of steroids that they come across,” Al Rumaithi said.

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