April 16, 2012
USADA announced today that Patrick Mendes of Las Vegas, Nev., an athlete in the sport of weightlifting, has accepted a two-year suspension for his use of Human Growth Hormone (hGH).
Mendes, 21, tested positive for hGH as the result of two separate samples collected on February 7, 2012, and February 27, 2012 as part of USADA’s Out of Competition Testing Program. The samples were tested at the WADA-accredited Sports Medicine Research & Testing Laboratory (SMRTL), located in Salt Lake City, Utah. Human Growth Hormone is prohibited under the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing and the International Weightlifting Federation (“IWF”) Anti-Doping Policies, both of which have adopted the World Anti-Doping Code.
Mendes, admitted his use of hGH and accepted a two-year period of ineligibility, which began on March 19, 2012, the day he accepted a provisional suspension. As a result of the sanction, Mendes is also disqualified from all competitive results obtained on or subsequent to February 7, 2012, the date the first blood sample was collected, including forfeiture of any medals, points, and prizes.
“This case demonstrates yet again that the hGH test works to stop this dangerous drug from being used in sport,” said USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart. “We are pleased the athlete in this case chose to admit his use of hGH and accept the sanction. USADA remains committed to detecting and deterring the use of this performance-enhancing drug so that all clean athletes can have confidence in the integrity of competition.”
In an effort to aid athletes, as well as all support team members such as parents and coaches, in understanding the rules applicable to them, USADA provides comprehensive instruction on its website on the testing process and prohibited substances, how to obtain permission to use a necessary medication, and the risks and dangers of taking supplements as well as performance-enhancing and recreational drugs. In addition, the agency manages a drug reference hotline, Drug Reference Online (www.GlobalDRO.com), conducts educational sessions with National Governing Bodies and their athletes, and proactively distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as the Prohibited List, easy-reference wallet cards, periodic newsletters, and protocol and policy reference documentation.
USADA is responsible for the testing and results management process for athletes in the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement, and is equally dedicated to preserving the integrity of sport through research initiatives and educational programs.