Diuretics

Last Updated: June 29, 2018

Definition - What does Diuretics mean?

Diuretics, also called water pills, refers to prescribed medications that generally treat patients with chronic heart and/or kidney conditions. However, athletes are notorious for abusing diuretics prior to and leading up to competition to improve performance during events. It is standard regulation that diuretics are banned in all college-level, Olympic, and professional athlete organizations. Although diuretics can help control blood pressure, for example, it can still present adverse side effects such as dehydration, sodium depletion, and vertigo (dizziness).

Some employees, or potential employees, also attempt to cheat urine drug tests by using diuretics to help them eliminate as much fluid as possible while also drinking more water in the belief that they can "flush out" any drugs in their system.

WorkplaceTesting explains Diuretics

Diuretics that are abused regularly can incur major health complications including heart failure or kidney damage. Biological and physiological implications occur as a result of diuretics emptying vital minerals, nutrients, and substances such as electrolytes and potassium which contribute to homeostasis in the body. The World Anti-Doping Agency and affiliate anti-doping organizations uphold stringent rules against the use of diuretics to ensure fair competition while promoting a healthy training regimen.

For athletes participating in sports such as boxing, racing, and wrestling, removing excess water weight and/or evacuating other drugs in urine can affect their competition status. An athlete who tests positive for diuretics can lead to serious infractions such as immediate disqualification from an event, sanction from future competition, and/or stripping of medals/titles. Although athletes who choose to ingest diuretics experience short-term physical enhancements, there are legal and health ramifications that can jeopardize their sports career and threaten their life.

Share this:

Connect with us

Email Newsletter

Join thousands of employment testing and employee wellness professionals.