ISSN : 2146-3123
E-ISSN : 2146-3131

Preventive Health Perspective in Sports Medicine: The Trend at the Use of Medications and Nutritional Supplements during 5 Years Period between 2003 and 2008 in Football
Ethem Kavukcu 1, Kamil Mehmet Burgazlı 2
1Department of Family Medicine, Sports Medicine, Akdeniz University, Antalya, Turkey
2Department of Internal Medicine, Sports Medicine, Medical and Research Center Wuppertal, Wuppertal, Germany
DOI : 10.5152/balkanmedj.2012.090
Pages : 74-79


Objective: To assess the prevalence of medication and nutritional supplement use in male Football Super League players and to observe the long term changes of players' attitudes during 5 years period (4 seasons).

Study Design: Retrospective study.

Material and Methods: Review and analysis of 4176 doping control forms -declaration reports- about players' medication intake including; Super League, UEFA Cup and the UEFA Champions League matches. Team physician was asked to document all medications and nutritional supplements taken by the Football Super League players in the last 72 hours before each match.

Results: A total intake of 5939 substances were documented, of which almost half 49.2% (n=2921) were classified as medications and 50.8% (n=3018) were nutritional supplements. The average consumption per player was 1.42 substance/match; 0.70 were medications and 0.72 of nutritional supplements. The supplements used most frequently were NSAIDs 24.6% (n=1460) accounting for almost one in four of all reported supplements. Diclofenac Sodium was the most frequently reported active pharmaceutical ingredient. Second most frequently used supplements were vitamins (22.2%). The average drug consumption reported per player has been increasing every passing year. It was 0.7 substance/match/player (0.4 medication; 0.3 nutritional supplement) in 2003-2004 season; was increased to 1.8 substance/match (0.8 medication; 1.0 nutritional supplement) in 2006-2007 season.

Conclusion: The trends seen in this survey point to an overuse of NSAIDs and vitamins in comparison with other medications, amoung Turkish Super League football players (p<0.001). The use of NSAIDs has increased but the medication groups did not differ significantly between seasons, in terms of distribution. This increasing use of medications especially of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and nutritional supplements is alarming and needs to be argued.

Keywords : Permitted medications, nutritional supplements, doping
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