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A class of steroid hormones produced by the adrenal cortex that enable the body to cope with stressors by increasing concentrations in the blood of glucose, fatty acids and amino acids, and by raising blood pressure. Excessively high levels of glucocorticosteroids depress the immune system and inflammation response. All glucocorticosteroids are on the World Anti-Doping Agency's 2005 list of substances prohibited in-competition when administered orally, rectally, intravenously, or intramuscularly, unless approval has been granted after application for a Therapeutic Use Exemption. All other routes of administration require an abbreviated Therapeutic Use Exemption. Dermatological preparations of glucocorticosteroids are not prohibited. Because glucocorticosteroids are so generally available that it is easy for an athlete to unintentionally violate anti-doping rules, it is classified in the Prohibited List as one of the specified substances. Doping violations involving a specified substance, such as a glucocorticosteroid may result in a reduced sanction if the athlete can establish that its use was not intended to enhance sport performance.

Subjects: Sports and Exercise Medicine.

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