What does a Doc say about Overeem's "excuses"?
by Dr. Johnny Benjamin on Apr 24, 2012 at 7:45 am ET
Alistair Overeem finally broke his silence on Monday to explain why a surprise drug test detected elevated testosterone levels.
The failed test ultimately cost Overeem a slot in next month’s UFC 146 heavyweight title fight with champion Junior Dos Santos, and today, he goes before the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
In our latest installment of “Ask the Fight Doc,” MMAjunkie.com medical columnist and consultant Dr. Johnny Benjamin discusses Overeem’s excuse that a prescribed medication unknowingly contained testosterone.
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Dr. B - What do you make of Alistair Overeem’s explanation for his failed drug test?
His explanation is interesting to say the least but doesn’t pass close scrutiny.
It is not uncommon for injured contact- or combat-sports athletes to require anti-inflammatory injections during their training. These injections usually consist of a short-acting anesthetic (lidocaine, xylocaine or marcaine) plus a glucocorticoid (cortisone). This injection immediately numbs the injury, and the cortisone provides longer lasting anti-inflammatory properties.
These injections are legal but must be disclosed on any and all pre-competition or random-screening paperwork.
Cortisone is a glucocorticoid steroid, which is much different than an anabolic steroid such as testosterone (T) and many of the synthetic performance-enhancing drugs (PED) with which the sporting world is unfortunately all too familiar.
Testosterone is never included in these injections for any legitimate purposes.
In the U.S., if a physician, in fact, injected him he with testosterone without his knowledge and consent, he should file a complaint with the appropriate state board of medicine and file charges with law enforcement.
If he is unwilling to do so, it speaks volumes as to the truthfulness of his assertions.
This defense is significantly different than the tainted-supplement defenses because this is not the purchased product of some faceless and nameless vitamin company, but rather, the act of a very specific individual who is known to you and bound by laws and a professional code of conduct.
If, in fact, this happened as Overeem insists, it is his duty to expose this malicious and dangerous physician before he or she harms anyone else.