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Glucocorticoid elimination periods


Glucocorticoids (GCS) are anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive agents with broad clinical applications.

According to the Prohibited List, GCS are Special Substances of Class S9, and are prohibited in-competition. All glucocorticoids are prohibited when given by any injectable, oral or rectal route. All other routes of administration, including inhalation, intranasal, ophthalmologic, perianal, dermal, dental intracanal and topical administration, are permitted at all times and do not require a Therapeutic Use Exemption.

An athlete risks beeing sanctioned if a doping sample collected during a competition is found to exceed laboratory levels for GCS, its metabolites, or markers.

Following administration of glucocorticoids, the concentration in urine that is likely to lead to an adverse analytical finding can be reached within varying periods of time (days to weeks) depending on the glucocorticoid used, its dose and route of administration.

To reduce the risk of an adverse result, it is advisable to be guided by the elimination periods of the GCS.

All sports medicine specialists are encouraged to keep complete and accurate clinical records, including time and dose of administration, when treating athletes, even if the administration of GCS occurs during the out-of-competition period. RUSADA recommends medical practitioners to refer to the GCS elimination time table.

Source: WADA