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Back in 1993, Denise Rutkowski was a very successful female bodybuilder and her success was really impressive. But since a woman without testosterone cannot build muscle, she had to take huge doses of steroids. Taking large doses of steroids turned into substitution therapy, literally turning Rutkowski into a man.
The story of Denise Rutkowski
Denise, also nicknamed as “The Golden Panther,” was a great female bodybuilder during the ’90s. She started her bodybuilding career in 1989 when she came to San Diego, California.
She only had her professional debut during the 1993 IFBB Jan Tana Classic when she won in the heavyweight division and became the overall champion.
One of the most noteworthy bodybuilding contests she participated in was the “IFBB Ms. Olympia 1993” where she won second place. This also became the last contest she had joined in and after that decided to go back home in Texas.
After winning Ms. Olympia in 1993, Denise decided to return home to Fort Worth, Texas in 1994. During that time, she was already having problems with her hormones and side effects on her mental state, such as depression. Because of this, she dedicated her time to increase her faith in God. She even attended a Bible school for two years and became active in spreading the word of God in various religious events in the US. In 2001, she returned to train for bodybuilding, regaining a better physical condition.
Fast forward to 2012 and 2013, it was reported that Rutkowski was arrested for evading an arrest in Tarrant County, Texas. The police had a hard time recognizing her identity as her appearance had a drastic change.
A mugshot of her has surfaced on the internet and revealed a shocking visual of her looking similar to a man and even had grown a beard.
To see how her physical appearance had changed, here’s a photo of how Denise looks when she was 30 years old, at the peak of her career, and another photo of her when she was 50 years old, which was taken by the police in 2012 when she was arrested.
The changes in her body were probably due to excessively used steroids during her bodybuilding training and possible drug addiction. Since testosterone, a hormone that helps in developing male sexual characteristics, was mostly found in anabolic steroids, this led to a transformation on Rutkowski’s body making it look more like a male than a female.
The negative effects of anabolic steroids, especially to women
Anabolic steroids are used as a performance-enhancing drug that can increase muscle mass and decrease fat, hence it is typically used by bodybuilders, whether male or female.
Side effects in using anabolic steroids are normal, but when misused these effects can be dangerous to the person and can even lead to death.
Since anabolic steroids include testosterone, a primary hormone for males, female bodybuilders who overused their intake of steroids can have serious changes in their bodies. These changes in women’s body include:
- course skin
- breast atrophy
- excessive body hair growth
- male-pattern baldness
- deepening of voice
- swelling of clitoris
- irregular menstrual cycles
- severe acne breakout
- significant muscle growth
And, most of these effects are evident in Denise’s physical appearance.
Treatment for abuse of anabolic steroids
Deciding to quit from the severe abuse of using anabolic steroids is hard, but it’s not impossible. For women who have similar experiences and want to overcome their addiction in this drug, many ways can help them.
Seeking proper education and counseling are necessary for you to understand the things you must do to stop and change your lifestyle. It will be hard at first, so you need to continually seek assistance while battling your addiction to using steroids.
These are some of the factors that must be considered before a person gets proper treatment for anabolic steroid abuse.
- How long has a person been using anabolic steroids?
- What is the average dosage of anabolic steroids they are taking?
- How often did they take it?
- Did they combine this drug with other drugs or alcoholic beverages?
- What are the person’s mental health and medical history?
- How they administered anabolic steroids?
With continuous treatment and discipline, it is possible that a bodybuilder who suffered from addiction from steroids can still find hope. Just like what Denise had experienced.
After all her success and downfall as a woman bodybuilder, she seems to be looking well based on the latest updates about her. She remained active in her religious activities and possibly volunteering to help underprivileged children and even stray animals since this was her interest.
There’s no doubt that Denise Rutkowski is still one of the most successful and sought-after female bodybuilders. She may only have a brief career in bodybuilding, but what she has achieved will always leave a mark on other women who also want to try the said sport.
It’s good to know she’s still well and healthy and doing the things she loves to do aside from bodybuilding.