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NSAC Approved Todd Duffee And Dan Henderson For TRT

Chael Sonnen may have brought the controversial Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) into the limelight, but he certainly isn’t the only fighter who has used the treatment. In fact, unlike Sonnen, both Dan Henderson and Todd Duffee actually had TRT approved by the NSAC in past fights. From The Wrestling Observer (subscription required) via BE:

In Nevada, it has only been approved for two fighters, Dan Henderson and Todd Duffee (before the Mike Russow fight on 5/29). The stories about Randy Couture linked to TRT in Nevada and having an exemption is an urban myth. Couture’s name has been linked with it since 2007 when Joe Rogan, in an ESPN interview, when talking about Couture, made a mention of how with things like hormone replacement therapy, athletes are now able to compete at an older age than in the past. It should be noted that it is not believed Duffee’s being let go by UFC after this loss had anything to do with this treatment. Henderson has been tested after all of his fights in Nevada and always fell beneath the 6-to-1 ratio. Duffee was blood tested leading to the Russow fight, but was not tested after the fight because he lost. Nevada usually tests winners and some losers at random, but not all losers are tested under the guise that if you lost, you didn’t score an unfair win. Duffee was not in a title match or a main event where both fighters would automatically be tested. Only one fighter in California has ever been approved for testosterone replacement therapy, although the commission would not give his name.

Of course, a fighter only undergoes TRT because they have low levels of testosterone in the first place. Here’s MMA Junkie’s Dr. Johnny Benjamin explaining what causes low testosterone levels. Guess what the biggest reason is? Steroids!

Some common reasons for significantly low testosterone levels in an otherwise healthy young man are pituitary-gland issues, primary gonadal issues and/or side effects of anabolic steroid use. As an FYI, pituitary dysfunction was ruled out in Sonnen’s case.

So, that leaves two likely choices – with one being far more likely than the other.

…Sonnen was evaluated and treated by his local family practice doctor (Dr. Mark Czarnecki, D.O.) in Dallas, Ore. After doing background research, I have no reason to believe that Dr. Czarnecki is not a fine, board-certified family-practice doctor of osteopathy. But a fellowship-trained expert in endocrinology he is not (and absolutely no disrespect is intended).

When Dr. Czarnecki was questioned during the hearing, he said that he was unaware of any drugs that could cause the condition for which he had diagnosed and was treating Sonnen. Sadly, by his own admission, this physician was unaware that testicular atrophy and subsequent low testosterone are common and widely known side effects of anabolic-steroid use.

So does that mean Sonnen, Henderson, Duffee and whoever else is undergoing TRT is/were on steroids? Not necessarily, it’s impossible to know for sure with the information at hand, but chances are at least some of them are.

Image via Sherdog

  • wherewhenwhat

    Here we go with the “steroids are bad” propaganda”. The media will have a field day if this gets out. Some people just dont know how to use steroids properly, they have a very specific limit, and you cant use them long term or else this happens, but you can do short cycles and an immediate recovery cycle to get your body back to what it should be.

    Alot of people dont realise this or choose to ignore it, and act irresponsible during their much needed post cycle recovery.

    It just comes down to ignorance and foolishness about steroids.

    • jgassen15

      This anti-steroids tirade again is an attempt to taint this sport as it has baseball. Look… besides steroids (which you mentioned) what is a MAJOR cause of hypopituitarism which leads to low testosterone and low growth hormone? Blows to the head. In your ignorance and witch hunt for anyone possibly taking steroids, you succeed in neglecting the most obvious solution. Head trauma, especially if it is repeated in say sparring, fights, etc. can cause damage to the vulnerable pituitary. This has been the case in the NFL where concussions are the norm (I bet you’d find a lot more guys on TRT). Do I think Dan Henderson took steroids… maybe in Japan.. but not likely, his size has been relatively constant in all the years he’s competed. Do I think Todd Duffee took steroids… well he’s a young guy who hasn’t been in the sport that long and looks like Schwarzeneggar… yes I can defintely rationlize that assumption. TRT would allow Duffee to be on short-estered steroids all year, then come off to a low dose of Testosterone a while before the fight to clear his system and test normal. In any event, Duffee getting his ass handed to him by Mike Russow really negates your fear of these “roided-up” beasts dominating in the UFC. Do you remeember a giant Ken Shamrock admitting to steroid use then getting finished by a mere 170-lb. skinny Royce Gracie?

  • BreakUrNeck

    I’m a D.C. and I knew, specialist or D.O, or whatever..that’s a general knowledge type scenario. Either he was lying or being a dumbass.

  • joeblow


    Ah come on this shit has nothing to do with “using steroids properly” its about the unfair advantage it provides. yeah maybe steroids might not be as bad for people as the media often makes them out to be but as long as its illegal for some to use while legal or undetected for others sports will have an unfair disparity. Which often influences athletes to use so as they dont fall behind.

    Its a viscous circle

  • wherewhenwhat

    It is a viscous circle but, its one the media loves to blow out of proportion and tarnish athletes that choose to use and condemn the drug outright.

    I think steroids should be illegal in all pro sports do to the degree of competition.
    However recreational use is a completely different subject and we should have the right to experiment, and acquiring the drug should not have to be shady business.

    Unfortunately this puts another ugly stain on Steroids already horrible reputation.

  • Frederick Puccini

    I think all the fighters should not take the steroids.. This will harm them in the later stage.. After all they are fighters they should be true with the game..
    steroids effects

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