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UCI applauds WADA decision to extend ban on glucocorticoids

A wider reach on the ban on glucocorticoids will begin in 2022.

Glucocorticoids will see a wider ban in 2022, and the UCI couldn’t be happier.

The World Anti-Doping Agency extended an existing ban for the powerful anti-inflammatory to also include a new swath of in-competition treatments, meaning zero tolerance for the controversial treatment starting next year.

“The decision to generalize the ban on glucocorticoids in competition regardless of the type of injection is a new step forward in the protection of the health of athletes, especially of cyclists, which was among my campaign commitments in 2017,” said UCI president David Lappartient in a statement Wednesday. “I am pleased that the banning of glucocorticoids comes under the authority of WADA, which I would like to thank for this decision that represents progress for sport in general and cycling in particular.”

Glucocorticoids have long been abused in sport, allowing athletes to improve performance by using the treatments to reduce swelling and pain. They’ve also been used as a way to trim weight ahead of major races. WADA banned them in competition, but still allowed some usage under doctor’s orders with a TUE.

The latest ban — which will roll out in 2022 — will also see an in-competition ban of periarticular, intraarticular, peritendinous, intratendinous, epidural, intrathecal, intramural, intralesional, intradermal, and subcutaneous injections officials said.