August 1, 2014

Steroid Testing Kit for Home Use

Confirm Biosciences has released a new home anabolic steroid testing kit this month. CNBC’s Sports Biz with Darren Rovell thinks it would be useful for parents to test their children for steroid use. Athletes may found it useful and convenient to monitor the elimination of banned substances from their bodies.

STEROIDCONFIRM™ enables sports trainers, employers and parents to test individuals who they suspect may be abusing steroids. Simply take a urine specimen at home, in the workplace or at school, and mail to our laboratory using the pre-paid shipping pak. You have the option to perform a confidential test (no personal information is required) or a test with a Chain of Custody…

Using Liquid Chromatograph Tandem Mass Spectrometry (LC/MS/MS), the most sophisticated and sensitive technology available for the steroid testing community, STEROIDCONFIRM™ can accurately quantify substances well below the cut-off levels. Each specimen is tested directly with this instrument – there is no screening process.

Confirm Biosciences claims the SteroidConfirm steroid testing kit is comparable to the steroid panels used by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). This may be misleading. [Read more...]

Testosterone:Epitestosterone Ratio Test – False Negatives and False Positives

Source: Wikipedia

The scientific and anti-doping community continue to struggle with the development a test for exogenous growth hormone in athletes. They haven’t even been able to produce scientific evidence that growth hormone enhances athletic performance in spite of anecdotal evidence [from athletes and strength coaches] that this is the case.

But science continues to do a good job at finding weakness in the doping controls currently in place. Tip of the hat to Trust But Verify for alerting us of a new study which, among other things, tells us exactly how much exogenous testosterone some athletes can use and still pass the drug test.

The study reveals serious weaknesses in the testosterone:epitestosterone ratio test used by WADA and other anti-doping organizations (“Doping Test in Sports Confounded by Common Genetic Trait,” March 21). [Read more...]

Steroid Testing Student Athletes is Unconstitutional in State of Washington

The Supreme Court in the State of Washington ruled that random drug testing of student athletes (which presumably would include steroid testing) was unconstitutional.

Other states allow it. The U.S. Constitution allows it. But the Washington Supreme Court said today that random drug testing of student athletes is not allowed under the state constitution.

If random testing student athletes for steroids and other drugs is consistent with the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, then why does the Washington state constitution prohibit random testing? Quite simply, residents of Washington have more privacy protections than those granted by the U.S. Constitution (“They Ain’t Gonna Pee-Pee in No Cup,” March 14).

The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld random testing not only of athletes but of students participating in other extracurricular activities as well, and its logic (such as it is) suggests that random testing of all students also would be consistent with the Fourth Amendment. But Washington’s constitution has a privacy guarantee that goes beyond the prohibition of unreasonable searches and seizures, saying, “No person shall be disturbed in his private affairs, or his home invaded, without authority of law.” The state Supreme Court has read this clause as providing more protection than the Fourth Amendment…

According to Reason, the State of Washington is not the only state whose residents are granted greater privacy protections than the U.S. Constitution (which I suspect would likely also prohibit random steroid testing in student athletes).

Washington is not the only state where residents enjoy more privacy protection than the Fourth Amendment (as currently read) guarantees. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court, for example, has taken a dimmer view of student drug testing than the U.S. Supreme Court. The Alaska Supreme Court has interpreted the state constitution’s privacy clause, which says the “right of the people to privacy is recognized and shall not be infringed,” as prohibiting prosecution of people for possessing small amounts of marijuana at home. 

The steroid testing trend in public high schools sweeping the nation appears to be permanently stalled in at least a few states.

Does Texas High School Steroid Education Video Work?

The State of Texas University Interscholastic League (UIL) produced a steroid education video entitled “The Making of a Champion.” The steroid education video was released in conjunction with the introduction of steroid testing in public high school sports in Texas.

The video features lengthy segments featuring high school teenage athletes who used steroids and suffered. The video implies that anabolic steroids caused stroke and paralysis in one case; it implies that steroids caused suicide in the other case (Taylor Hooton). This type of “scare tactic” approach is common in state produced steroid education and anti-drug productions. [Read more...]

Critical Comments on Texas High School Steroid Testing Program

I applaud Laurie Fox of the Dallas Morning News for breaking ranks with the sycophantic cheerleaders for Texas’ UIL Anabolic Steroid Testing Program.

The short history of steroid testing in public schools has yielded little, if anything. In the handful of local school districts that already test for steroids, no positive test has been reported. The same is true for limited state programs in Florida and New Jersey.

“It’s like looking for a needle in a haystack,” said Lloyd Johnston, a noted researcher at the University of Michigan. “My guess is that the payoff relative to the cost won’t be high.” [Read more...]

Drug Testing to Reduce Steroid Use by High School Athletes

Most people at every point on the steroid regulatory spectrum, from the advocates of steroid legalization to anti-steroid zealots, agree that anabolic steroid use by teenagers is bad. There are a few people who believe steroids are good for children, pre-teens and teenagers. But in general, most people agree with government efforts to reduce steroid use in teenage athletes. Unfortunately, they seem to accept all anti-steroid efforts without question regardless of their efficacy or lack thereof. People seem to be content with “feel good” endeavors that accomplish little. [Read more...]