A few days ago, while I was working at the computer, I remembered one of the Karate champions, Andy Hug. I have been doing Karate for many years in the past. It is more than ten years that I have abandoned it because I didn’t have time. I loved some of the Karate champions and Andy Hug was the top ranked one. While I was checking the web pages and enjoying the Andy’s videos, a sentence attracted my attention: Andy passed away on August 2000.
I felt so sorry for him and thought he was passed away because of an accident or something like that but when I read he died because of leukemia, I was really shocked. I could not believe that it is possible that such a strong champion to be defeated by leukemia. Leukemia has different kinds but when I read that it took only a few days from the day that he was diagnosed with leukemia and the day that he passed away, I became dead shocked and I could not do anything for a few hours. What a fulminant disease!
I made more researches over the web and found out that some people believe that Andy was on steroids. I really do not know and could not find anything to confirms this idea but with all due respect to Andy Hug, I think it can be true because leukemia in such a healthy champion should be triggered and intensified by something unusual. There a lot of ordinary people involved in different kinds of leukemia but many of them can survive. So why shouldn’t such a strong man be able to survive and dies so fast and easy?
Anyway, it can be true or false and I am not going to judge about Andy. He is too big to be accused for these things but I told you about the storm I had in my mind after I read that news. He was died in 2000 and I did not know.
Let’s see if it is really possible that athletes die because of doping. Doping has become so usual in sports because athletes love to win and defeat their competitors but does it really worth?
I know two different kinds of doping very well but there are some other kinds too. One of them is called blood doping that can be so dangerous and cause immediate heart arrest and death. In this kind of doping, they remove some blood from the athlete a few days before the competition, condense the red blood cells and enrich them with loads of oxygen and then this blood will be injected to him/her few minutes or hours before the race. This amount of blood which is enriched with oxygen can create an extraordinary energy in the athlete. Although I think this kind of doping can not cause blood cancer but it is so dangerous because it imposes a fatal pressure on heart and lungs and other organs.
Another kind of doping is done mostly by anabolic steroids that act like the steroid hormone, testosterone: Nandrolone, tetrahydrogestrinone (THG), stanozolol, androstenedione, DHEA.
This kind of doping doesn’t have any instant effect but it works in long term and intensifies muscle production for the athletes. We all have steroids in our body but they are at the normal level which is necessary for the normal body functions but extra amount of these materials can cause serious problems. I have already mentioned in two of my other articles that steroids can intensify the growth and propagation of tumor cells but it seems higher levels of these materials can cause cancer and specially blood cancer, leukemia.
I researched to find the side effects of the anabolic agents. There are some side effects like kidney damage, development of breasts, premature baldness, shrinking and hardening of testicles, sterility and impotence, acne, increased aggression and sexual appetite in men and development of male features, including facial hair, deepening of the voice, irregular periods, increased aggression in women. I have not been able to find anything related to doping and blood cancer or even any other kind of cancer but I am sure one day it will be announced that anabolic agents can cause cancer.
There are some other kinds of doping. Fortunately all kinds of doping are seriously banned in sports and athletics and there are a lot of doping control and testing to find the violating athletes. There are penalties for doping and all the athletes know this but many of them still do it. It can help the athletes to win sometimes but it causes them to lose many things: their health, beauty, credit and reputation if they get caught and finally their life.
I wish Andy was still alive. May he rest in peace, Amen!
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