2011 Volume 131 Issue 12 Pages 1761-1764
Drug use and abuse by athletes has become a common problem. Pharmacists can assist by managing the legitimate medication needs of athletes to prevent them from accidentally using a banned substance. Pharmacists can also educate athletes and the public about the health consequences of using performance-enhancing substances. Pharmacists can play a variety of roles to assist with anti-doping. Such roles include educating, advising, dispensing and monitoring medications and supplements; and working with anti-doping agencies. There are few established educational opportunities for pharmacists and pharmacy students. Educational programs in sports pharmacy and doping control need to be developed for instruction in the classroom, for post-graduate training and for experiential programs. Classroom instruction should include information about performance-enhancing substances and general principles of doping control. Student activities for an established advanced pharmacy practice experience include education on performance-enhancing substances and assay technologies, preparing and providing presentations to athletes and others regarding these substances, performing literature research on drugs and dietary supplements used to improve athletic performance, writing a monograph on these substances, and participating in doping control programs.