An Unpoplar opinion on TRT Therapetic use Exemptions

There is no doubt that the use of testosterone replacement therapy in MMA has been a farce in the past few years with lax and inconsistent standards being applied by various athletic commissions.  Today’s surprise development of the Nevada state athletic commission banning TRT TUE’s and urging other athletic commissions to follow suit is a terrific improvement from the past landscape.

As noted by official MMA record keeper Kirik Jenness, the action from the MMA community has been soundly one sided.

Despite the overwhelmingly positive action from Camiseta Valencia the MMA community there is work to Camiseta Selección de fútbol de Arabia Saudita be done.  As noted at MMAFighting, each jurisdiction is complimentary to carve their own path and despite the NSAC’s influence, no other jurisdiction is bound by their decision.

So must other jurisdictions ban TRT TUE’s?  The unpopular reality is no.  This is not to suggest that a return to the former landscape is desirable.  Realistically, TRT TUE’s must be exceedingly rare as evidenced by the IOC and USADA track Camiseta Inter Milan record, however, an outright ban is problematic as it can cause legal claims of discrimination.

TUE’s gained notoriety with TRT, however, TUE’s exist for any number of medically needed medications.   Under the WADA standards adopted by lots of state and Provincial athletic Commissions the TUE exists when a ”medication an athlete is required to take to treat an health problem or condition happens to fall under the Prohibited List, a Therapeutic use exemption (TUE) may give that athlete the authorization to take the needed medicine.“.

If a medication is genuinely needed TUE’s need to be considered by athletic Commissions.  Failing to do so can result in violations of Human Rights / Anti Discrimination legislation.   In BC, to take one example, the Human Right’s Code prohibits discrimination in employment based on “physical disability“.  Such language is conventional fare in Human Rights legislation across Canada.  If governments or sporting organization disallowed therapeutic use exemptions, they would likely run afoul of the protections used by the Code.

The option is not an outright ban but strict adherence to rigid standards about granting TUE’s.  The wheel does not even need to be reinvented.  WADA standards set out a sensible test for when TUE’s are to be granted, namely:

1. “The athlete would experience a significant impairment to health if 
the Prohibited substance or Prohibited method were to be withheld in 
the course of treating an acute or chronic medical condition.” (Article 
4.1 a. of the international conventional for TUEs.)

2. “The Therapeutic use of the Prohibited substance or Prohibited 
Method would produce no additional enhancement of performance 
other than that which might be anticipated by a return to a state of 
normal health following the treatment of a legit medical 

3. “There is no affordable Therapeutic alternative to the use of the 
otherwise Prohibited substance or Prohibited Method.” (Article 4.1 
c of the international conventional for TUEs.)

4. “The necessity for the use of the otherwise Prohibited substance or 
Prohibited method cannot be a consequence, wholly or in part, of 
prior non-Therapeutic use of any substance from the Prohibited 
List.” (Article 4.1 d. of the international conventional for TUEs.)

This is a hard test to meet and if appropriately applied TRT TUE’s can mainly be a thing of the past without resorting to an arguably unlawful outright ban.  Strict adherence to WADA TUE standards, coupled with random out of competition blood testing can go a long way to cleaning up PED abuse in combat sports.


Share this:

Like this:
Like Loading…


Can the UFC outright ban TRT?May 21, 2013In “Doping”
Quebec athletic commission gives Perplexing answer relating to TRT TUE’sApril 10, 2014In “Quebec MMA Law”
Let’s Talk about What MMA’s Doping and CTE claim may look LikeSeptember 22, 2015In “Doping”