Positive Test For 2019 European Champion Konstantinidi

A sample given by Greek weightlifter Eleni Konstantinidi has tested positive for a prohibited substance.

Konstantinidi won the W81 category at the 2019 European Weightlifting Championships. As a non-Olympic category, W81 was not very competitive – her winning total was lower than those that won the W64, W71 and W76 categories at the same competition and only 2kg higher than the winning total from W59.

The sample tested positive for Betamethasone, a glucocorticoid (a type of corticosteroid) usually used for treating rheumatic disorders, skin diseases and allergic conditions. Use of glucocorticoids is allowed out of competition but they are prohibited in competition when taken in particular ways. Presumably, the sample that tested positive was collected at a competition and indicates that the drug was administered in a prohibited way.

Glucocorticoids have been widely used in sport for supposed performance-enhancing effects. There is some evidence that using them at a level that will lead to a positive in-competition test does give some benefit. However, they do have a range of potentially harmful side effects.

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