Display Settings:


Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Clin J Sport Med. 2009 Jan;19(1):33-8. doi: 10.1097/JSM.0b013e31818f169e.

Medication use by athletes at the Athens 2004 Summer Olympic Games.

Author information

  • 1Athens 2004 Organising Committee for the Olympic Games, Athens, Greece. chtsitsi@yahoo.com



To gather data and examine the use by elite Olympic athletes of food supplements and pharmaceutical preparations in total and per sport, country, and gender.


Survey study.


Athens 2004 Olympic Games (OG).


Data from 2 sources were collected: athletes' declaration of medications/supplements intake recorded on the Doping Control Official Record during sample collection for doping control, and athletes' application forms for granting of a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) and through the abbreviated TUE process (aTUE).


Classification of declared food supplements according to the active ingredient and medications according to therapeutic actions and active compounds.


24.3% of the athletes tested for doping control declared no use of medications or food supplements. Food supplements (45.3%) continue to be popular, with vitamins (43.2%) and proteins/aminoacids (13.9%) in power sports being most widely used. Nonsteroidal antiinflammatory agents and analgesics were also commonly used by athletes (11.1% and 3.7%, respectively). The use of the hemoderivative actovegin and several nonprohibited anabolic preparations are discussed. The prevalence of medication use for asthma and the dangers of drug interactions are also presented.Laboratory analysis data reveal that of the aTUEs received for inhaled glucocorticosteroids, only budesonide was detectable in significant percentage (10.0%). Only 6.5% of the 445 athletes approved to inhale beta2-agonists led to an adverse analytical finding.


This review demonstrates that overuse of food supplements was slightly reduced compared to previous OGs and a more rational approach to the use of medication is being adopted.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk