4th August 2021

Covid-19 treatment blamed for two year doping ban

Therapeutic treatment administered to an Italian volleyball player to treat post Covid-19 symptoms has been blamed for an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) for multiple substances that resulted in a two year doping ban. Alberto Polo returned an adverse analytical finding (AAF – or ‘positive test’) for meldonium, hydrochlorothiazide, 4-amino-6-chloro-1,3-benzenedisulfonamide (ACB), testosterone and its precursor, DHEA, at the Piacenza vs. Itas Trentino SuperLega Quarter Final Play-Off on 14 March. 

In April his club, Piacenza, claimed that his AAF was due to a ‘drug prescribed to the player for therapeutic purposes aimed at healing residual pathologies from post Covid-19 symptoms’. On 27 July, Polo was sanctioned with a two year ban expiring on 1 April 2023, Italy’s anti-doping agency (NADO Italia) announced. Case details were not published, but the statement mentions that Polo’s sanction was reduced under Article 12.2.2 of Italy’s Sport Anti-Doping Code (CSA), which allows such a reduction if NADO Italia couldn’t prove that an ADRV was intentional.

A statement from Piacenza abdicated all responsibility for the ADRV. “We have always been in favour of clean sport and against any attempts at shortcuts such as doping”, said Hristo Zlatanov, the club’s General Manager. “We operate in full compliance with all rules and sporting ethics. We therefore take note of the disqualification while awaiting the reasons of the judge.”

You may also like...

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This