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Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino Granted Exemption By USADA

UFC star Cris "Cyborg" Justino has been cleared of a doping violation by the United States Anti-Doping Agency.

USADA remarked Justino has been granted a retroactive Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) for the drug. It added the application for a TUE was granted in the case of Justino because the athlete had an unequivocally diagnosed chronic medical condition for which the use of Spironolactone is the appropriate standard of care.

The United States Anti-Doping Agency remarked it was further determined that the athlete and her medical team pursued and exhausted all non-prohibited alternatives and that the low dose of the medication is consistent with best medical practice to treat her condition and would return the athlete to a normal state of health without providing a performance-enhancing benefit. It was further commented that her provisional suspension has been lifted with immediate effect and her positive test will not result in an anti-doping policy violation because Justino's TUE application was granted retroactively. It further reads that Justino however as a condition of the TUE approval will be required to continue to carefully document her medical care and must apply for a TUE renewal in advance of TUE expiry should she wish to maintain compliance with the UFC Anti-Doping Policy.

USADA lifted her provisional suspension following her positive test for a banned substance late last year. The United States Anti-Doping Agency announced a thorough investigation into the case of Cris Justino revealed that she was making use of the drug Spironolactone for a medical condition, as prescribed by her physician. The substance is a diuretic that is commonly used as a masking agent for anabolic androgenic steroids. Spironolactone is prohibited at all times under the UFC's anti-doping policy.

In a statement, USADA said Justino upon notice of her positive test immediately identified a medication prescribed by her physician for the treatment of a common endocrine disorder as the source of the prohibited substance detected in her sample. The United States Anti-Doping Agency added Justino also participated in multiple interviews with USADA's investigative team and consented to USADA interviewing her physician as well.

Justino, in a statement after the initial announcement of USADA, said the medication was prescribed to her to address hypertension and to prevent ovarian cysts after she had an electrolyte hydroelectric imbalance and significant loss of potassium following her last fight, a TKO of Lina Lansberg on September 24. This fight was contested at 140 pounds because the UFC didn't have a 145-pound division. Justino said at the time that she has a history of cysts and she was bloated and weak and had a low white blood cell count when she arrived to meet the doctor.

The Brazilian and American mixed martial artist and former Strikeforce Women's Featherweight Champion could now be looking at a potential match with the newly-crowned UFC first 145-pound female champion Germaine de Randamie who defeated Holly Holm via unanimous decision at UFC 208 in Brooklyn. Randamie recently remarked she is "not afraid" of having a fight with Justino, but feels her next fight should be a rematch against Holm.

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Albert Wolfgang
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