On April 8th, 2018 the Science Daily Website reported that researchers at the University of Waterloo, Canada, have developed a more efficient and less expensive way to test athletes for performance-enhancing drugs. The new process reduces the time to analyze a sample from 30 minutes to only 55 seconds, and they are working to further reduce it to only 10 seconds.
“That’s fast enough to screen every Olympic athlete every day,” said Dr. Germán Augusto Gómez-Ríos, a postdoctoral fellow with Waterloo’s Pawliszyn Research Group.
One of the prohibitive factors in drug testing athletes is the cost but the Waterloo University group are working with industry to reduce the cost to just a few dollars per sample.
At this point, there is no mention of when the new testing methods will be available for widespread use.
The proliferation of Performance Enhancing Drugs in physique sports is beyond alarming because of the health risks involved and the relative willingness for athletes to blatantly disregard those risks. Most of the PED’s used in our sport are acquired illegally from a dealer, and that dealer is often a trusted trainer or friend. PED’s are drugs, and all drugs have side effects, and PED’s can be potentially deadly if their use is not monitored by a physician.
On a personal note, it’s always amazed me how athletes will closely monitor everything they put into their body, to the point of near obsession, until it comes to PED’s where the promise of what the drugs will do seem to make the risks worth it. They buy them illegally for the most part from a dealer that doubles as the person prescribing what and how much you need. They are criminals, not physicians or even particularly knowledgeable about what they are prescribing yet they are often afforded absolute trust.
We will talk more about PED use and abuse in the coming weeks so that our NSL athletes can be more knowledgable and make healthy and informed choices.
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