Athletes using Performance Enhancing Substances

Harm-Reduction Clinic

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Many Family Physicians aren't sure how to help their patients who are Athletes using Performance Enhancing Substances (PES): what issues to watch out for and what to regularly monitor.

This clinic is for Family Doctors to refer their patients and get advice on the management of any current issues caused by substance use, and recommendations about how to monitor on an ongoing basis.

Patients need a referral from their Family Physician or a Walk-In-Clinic.

The service is offered at no cost (it is covered by the BC Medical Services Plan) and is completely confidential.

For patients who haven't yet spoken with their Family Physician about their use of PES, the report back to the physician will kickstart that conversation and ensure your regular health monitoring includes consideration of your PES use.

Our process

What to expect

how to access the clinic

Please download the referral request form and take it to your Family Physician or a Walk-In Clinic to complete. Access to the clinic is by referral only.

what this is

Management advice for the primary care physician to answer the question: “My patient is using Performance Enhancing Substances, what preventative health work do I need to do with them and how do I handle any issues they already have due to their PES use?”

what this isn't

  • A source for prescription steroids: this is about harm reduction.

Before your appointment

  • 10 days before your appointment you will receive an online questionnaire to complete.

Your appointment

The appointment will take about 30 minutes. It will consist of any clarification questions about the answers you provided in the questionnaire, a thorough physical examination and a review of your questions. At the end of the appointment you may receive a requisition for blood work and a heart-tracing (electrocardiogram or ECG).

Your follow-up appointment

About two weeks after your first appointment you will have a follow-up. At this appointment we will go through your results, including any bloodwork, answer any remaining questions and discuss recommendations. A report will be sent to your Family Physician (or the Walk In Clinic that referred you), and a copy provided to you.

Contents of the report

The report back will cover specific management of the following issues (if present), along with recommendations for monitoring their development.

  • Mental Health issues
    • Body Dysmorphic Disorder and OCD
    • Mood disorders
  • Cardiovascular issues
    • Abnormal cholesterol
    • Cardiovascular disease
    • Early Heart Failure
  • Blood issues
    • Abnormally thickened blood
    • Blood clots in the legs, lungs and brain (AKA strokes)
  • Liver disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Prostate health
  • Reproductive issues
    • Erectile Dysfunction
    • Infertility
    • Sexual dysfunction
  • Hormonal dysregulation
    • Anabolic Steroid-Induced Hypogonadism
    • Issues with Menopause
  • Other
    • Obstructive Sleep Apnea
    • Hair loss
    • Abnormal breast tissue (Gynecomastia)
    • Tendon damage
    • Intramuscular injection safety

Meet our team

Contact us


3491 Saanich Road
Victoria, BC V8X 1W8

Phone number

dial 101 for Nicole