ASSOCIATED PRESS: ROME, Sept. 2— Sue Howland, an Australian javelin thrower, has been barred from the world track and field championships after testing positive for ''a drug in the steroid group'' at a British meet earlier this summer, officials said today.
No positive results have yet been reported from drug tests taken at the championships themselves, Dr. Arne Ljungqvist, the head of the medical commission of track and field's worldwide governing body, said.
Howland, the only competitor barred so far from the championships for drugs, could face a lifetime ban from competition, although such a ban could be appealed after two years.
Howland, who turns 27 on Friday, was found to be using drugs at the Girobank Games in Belfast, Northern Ireland, July 20.

She finished second in the meet behind Fatima Whitbread of Britain with a throw of 210 feet 7 inches. Her best result for the year was a throw of 225-6 in Jessheim, Norway, June 11, and she is the third-best performer this year behind Petra Felke of East Germany and Whitbread. The qualifying rounds for the women's javelin throw are set for Saturday, with the final Sunday.