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Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

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  • Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

    A longtime lurker, I've grown to accept the fact that a burning question I have apparently isn't going to be answered (unless Kelli White has a good lawyer, perhaps). And that's the question posed in my subject line about "rush to judgement."

    First question I have is, "Does anybody actually know on what day Modafinil was IDed in White's urine?" The test came after her 100 win on 24 August, and French paper leaked the results on 30 August. Clearly the sample couldn't have been read until the 25th, but given that it was what must have been a "new mystery substance" it doesn't seem unrealistic to suppose that it was several days before they figured out it was Modafinil, since nobody had ever had a positive for it before. The 30 August stories said that IAAF then had to decide if it was a major or minor stimulant. TFN timeline never addresses it, but in looking at IAAF site I find this is what happened

    <<Wednesday 3 September 2003
    Monte-Carlo - Having obtained the necessary expert opinion on the subject, the IAAF has decided to classify the substance, modafinil, for which Kelli White tested positive following the Women’s 100m in Paris last week, in the category of weaker stimulants.>>

    So here's my major question(s):

    Who provided the "necessary expert opinion"?
    How did they--without the benefit of any clinical trials on the subject--decide that a substance that is tossed about like candy by many doctors apparently, given how benign it is, was performance-enhancing?

    How can White's lawyers not rip this action to shreds? I have to predict that in a short matter of time that Modafinil is going to end up like caffeine and ephedrine, not even on the banned list.

    Is this a sterling defense of White's character? Nah! The fact that she chose not to put it on her prescription-drugs form, prescribed by a doctor, leads me to believe she (and the others using it) were trying to hide something. But just as you can't bust somebody for smoking oregano even if they think it's marijuana, if it's not a helpful substance they shouldn't be banned for it.

    Bottom line: it was a hasty decision that shouldn't have been made. In retrospect, one has to posit that the IAAF was already running scared, knowing there was a THG scandal in the works, and wanted to stake out the high moral ground ahead of time.

  • #2
    Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

    I'm not an expert on this but from my guess...

    >How did they--without the benefit of any clinical trials on the
    >subject--decide that a substance that is tossed about like candy by many
    >doctors apparently, given how benign it is, was performance-enhancing?

    Just because the IAAF or IOC related labs haven't done specific clinical trials does not mean none have been done. Since this is a prescription drug, doesn't that mean it has been extensively tested either by or for the FDA or suitable organization?

    Since it's essentially something to give people falling asleep a perk-up, I think it's pretty safe to assume it is meant as a stimulant. Wouldn't suitable IAAF action be to study the literature testing it's ability to stimulate people? Wouldn't a standard test used in those trials involve it's effect on narcoleptics and non-narcoleptics? I guess though that still leaves open the arguement that it has completely different and benign effects on high performance athletes, who are nothing at all biologically like regular people.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

      I have asked this once, and then again:

      1. Did Kelli say she took it for narcolepsy, either due to her having the problem or there was a family history ?

      2. Does she or any family members have a history of narcolepsy ?

      If the answers to either of these questions are not truthful, then if nothing else she has BillClinton/Pete Rose disease... and she is thus tainted on way or another.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

        >Since
        >this is a prescription drug, doesn't that mean it has been extensively tested
        >either by or for the FDA or suitable organization?

        The FDA has let some things go to market with less research than you'd imagine.

        There's also the buzz that it might be used as a masking agent. Rumour is that truckers use it for double duty both as a stay-awake drug and a cover-up drug. I'm willing to bet that Caitlin & Co. are working on that angle.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

          The FDA has let
          >some things go to market with less research than you'd imagine.

          Well that's a rather vague and insinuating statement. I'm not familiar with the FDA one way or the other (and I suspect you as a probable Canadian don't either), but do you have anything specific to the effect that Modafinil has not been suitably screened before approval?

          There's
          >also the buzz that it might be used as a masking agent. Rumour is that
          >truckers use it for double duty both as a stay-awake drug and a cover-up drug.
          >I'm willing to bet that Caitlin & Co. are working on that angle.

          Would this count as betting on the sport? Does TnF have the same policies as Major League Baseball?

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

            >The FDA has let
            >some things go to market with less research than you'd
            >imagine.

            Well that's a rather vague and insinuating statement.

            This is not vague. http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/featur ... omper.html
            Neither is this. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline ... scription/

            Would this count as
            >betting on the sport? Does TnF have the same policies as Major League
            >Baseball?

            Gee, I had no idea I was up for the Hall of Fame. AS for my lifetime ban from the professional level of the sport, it's not due to betting or even drugs but from a congenital defect known as "being really slow".

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

              This is not vague.
              >http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/fea...05.pomper.html

              I'll agree that the above is not that vague with overall thoroughness of FDA monitoring (although it goes to great lengths to point out the deficiency is primarily in post-approval monitoring, not the initial approval process). But you are still insinuating there might be a problem with Modafinil and I didn't see it or it's generic name provigil mentioned.

              But that is all deviating from the original post which appears to claim that Modafinil may not be worthy of being a banned substance. I don't see the arguement supporting that claim as even it's defenders acknowledge that it has to properties of a stimulant.

              Gee, I had no idea I was up for the Hall of Fame. AS for
              >my lifetime ban from the professional level of the sport, it's not due to
              >betting or even drugs but from a congenital defect known as "being really
              >slow".

              Maybe in keeping in line with MLB's hard line on drug users, perhaps for your first offence you shouldn't be suspended but just given some 'treatment' or 'counselling'.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

                I think there might be something to what Due Process says. Why? Because I've heard it said for years that the only reason caffeine and ephedrine (about to become legal again, no?) were banned was because they started showing up in urine samples. So the powers-that-be took the tack that if athletes were taking it, must be bad. Time/science has proven them to be wrong and they finally got smart. They should have taken more time on Modafinil, that's all.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

                  >So the powers-that-be took the tack that if athletes were taking it, must be bad.<

                  If that were the way they did things, they would have banned Creatine long ago. They never have.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

                    Mebbe Mebbenot....are you from Ethopia?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Modafinil--A Rush To Judgement?

                      No, he's from EPOpia

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