Dr. Kaz Latven, (1995). Nichols Institute Substance Abuse Laboratory in Mission Valley, San Diego.

ANABOLIC STEROIDS are used mostly in power events. They are used in training to prepare for competitions. OTHER DRUGS are used for an edge in competitions.

The problem with steroids is that once they used to be fat soluble, and would stay in the system for quite some time. That made them detectable. But now, the new steroids are water soluble, which means they can be flushed from the system relatively quickly (CLENBUTEROL can be evacuated in a time span of 24-72 hours). Diuretics can be used to dilute them in a relatively short time (regimens are available to produce a clean athlete in eight hours). That makes them so much harder to detect, and is one of the reasons why random, unannounced testing is the only way to catch athletes who use water-soluble steroids. The opportunity to purge the system of the steroid traces should not be given to athletes.

BETA BLOCKERS are used to slow the heart. For example, a shooter does not want a racing heart when trying to squeeze the trigger between heart beats. The slower the heart, the longer the "inactive" heart period during which a trigger pull can be made.

DIURETICS are used mostly to reduce weight in sports where weight categories are important. They cause quick and significant weight loss. As stated above, they also can be used to dilute water-soluble steroids in urine samples.

NARCOTICS are probably not used widely because athletes generally are looking for an edge, not a "high." They most probably would be used in periods of extreme fatigue (e.g., cycling tours, yachting races, car rallies).

GROWTH HORMONE is used to "grow" bigger athletes. It can be reduced reasonably quickly to acceptable limits (48 hours is a best guess).

ERYTHROPOIETIN is used to stimulate red blood cell production in an attempt to improve endurance. It can be diluted in about 72 hours (best guess) to an acceptable level.

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