Experts on Chris Froome: The benefits of using too much Salbutamol are limited
Dec 13 2017 12:40 pm CET

Experts on Chris Froome: The benefits of using too much Salbutamol are limited
Experts on Chris Froome: The benefits of using too much Salbutamol are limited
Photo of Chris Froome © Mary Cárdenas /

The effect of a higher dosage of Salbutamol is limited for cyclists like Chris Froome, according to some experts.

The Team Sky rider was informed of an Adverse Analytical Finding during the Vuelta a España. Froome's sample was found to contain levels twice as high as the allowed value for Salbutamol, which is 1000 nanograms.

There is, however, no clear advantage to be gained when using high amounts of Salbutamol, according to Belgian sports doctor Chris Goossens.

"Salbutamol is a beta blocker used for breathing problems, normally by using an inhaler but it can also be supplied through medication," he explained to Sporza. But there is a limit. A therapeutic use is allowed, but only if you have received permission.

"It is well known that Froome suffers of asthma and is allowed to use the product up till a specific value."

Goossens does not believe that using too much of the substance would have a positive effect on a cyclist like Froome. "If you suffer from asthma, you need this product no matter what. You don't get much of an advantage from exceeding the limit. Breathing gets easier, but your heart rate goes up. So the profit is cancelled out by the negative side effect.

"So I don't see why you would exceed the limit. You don't profit from it much at all."

The director of the Dutch Doping Authority, Herman Ram, told NuSport that the case should be put into perspective.

"It makes complete sense that he hasn't been suspended provisionally. That is only possible when the federation is convinced of a severe offense. It's not at all clear yet whether that is the case for Froome.

"There are of course many asthma sufferers in sports, and there are cases about Salbutamol all the time. The fact that I am getting phonecalls from journalists today, is only the result of the rider's big name. But it's not a special case."



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