Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Athletic Benefit Of Growth Hormone Doping: Is It All In The Athlete's Mind?

Date:
June 18, 2008
Source:
The Endocrine Society
Summary:
If athletes believe they are using a performing-enhancing drug, they may think their athletic performance improves, and in some men it can, even if they are actually taking a dummy drug, a new study has found.

If athletes believe they are using a performing-enhancing drug, they may think their athletic performance improves, and in some men it can, even if they are actually taking a dummy drug, a new study has found.

Related Articles


This so-called placebo effect was greater in male recreational athletes than in females, said lead author Jennifer Hansen, RN, a nurse researcher at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney, Australia. In a study of growth hormone, the authors tested whether the power of the mind affects physical performance.

"Athletes are doping with growth hormone to improve sporting performance despite any evidence it actually improves performance," Hansen said. "Therefore, we wanted to know if any improvement in performance is due just to the athletes' belief that they are taking an agent that enhances performance, rather than to the agent itself."

Sixty-four young adult recreational athletes randomly received either growth hormone--a substance banned in sports--or an inactive substance (placebo) for 8 weeks. Neither the athletes who volunteered for the study nor the investigators knew which substance the athletes received. At the end of the study, the researchers asked the athletes to guess which agent they had taken and to say if they thought their sporting performance had changed. Then they tested the athletes on physical performance tests of endurance, strength, power, and sprint capacity.

Men were much more likely than women to think they had received growth hormone. Regardless of sex, athletes who took the dummy drug but believed they were on growth hormone ("incorrect guessers") thought their performance improved and actually had some improvement in all measures of performance. However, jump height (power) was the only test that showed a significantly greater improvement among the incorrect guessers, according to Hansen.

"The results of this study suggest that the placebo effect may be responsible, at least in part, for the perceived athletic benefit of doping with growth hormone for some people," Hansen said.

Detailed results of the study will be presented at The Endocrine Society's 90th Annual Meeting in San Francisco.

The study was funded by the World Anti-Doping Agency and the Australian Government Anti-Doping Research Program. Novo Nordisk supplied the growth hormone for this study.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Endocrine Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Endocrine Society. "Athletic Benefit Of Growth Hormone Doping: Is It All In The Athlete's Mind?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080617113743.htm>.
The Endocrine Society. (2008, June 18). Athletic Benefit Of Growth Hormone Doping: Is It All In The Athlete's Mind?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080617113743.htm
The Endocrine Society. "Athletic Benefit Of Growth Hormone Doping: Is It All In The Athlete's Mind?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080617113743.htm (accessed December 25, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

French General Physicians Begin Strike, ER Doctors Back to Work

French General Physicians Begin Strike, ER Doctors Back to Work

AFP (Dec. 23, 2014) French doctors went on strike Tuesday in protest at an upcoming health bill. Emergency room doctors on the other end are returning to work after reaching an historic agreement. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Malpractice Suit Changes Rule for Cruise Ships

Malpractice Suit Changes Rule for Cruise Ships

AP (Dec. 23, 2014) A recent court ruling may have opened the courthouse door for cruise ship passengers who claim poor treatment by ship medical personnel. (Dec. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are Paper Books Better Than E-Books For Sleep Cycle?

Are Paper Books Better Than E-Books For Sleep Cycle?

Newsy (Dec. 23, 2014) A study from Harvard Medical School shows that electronic readers utilizing LED technology interrupt people's natural sleep cycles. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Scientists in Amsterdam say couples transfer tens of millions of microbes when they kiss, encouraging healthy exposure to bacteria. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins