Chael Sonnen’s use of TRT (Testosterone Replacement Therapy) has been well-documented. However, the Oregon native states that he has two choices—he either employs TRT or dies.
You won a therapeutic use exemption from the Nevada State Athletic Commission for this fight, acknowledging you need two injections a week of testosterone for medical reasons (hypogonadism). Can you explain this?
I don't have an option. I either take this medicine or die. I'm not asking if I can take it. It's up to them to let me take it. It's a substance that's often abused, and I deal with taking it in shame. But a blood test can clear you, and show I take the appropriate amount. I'm paying for the tests. I've taken four so far. And they'll do a day-before and morning-after test as well.
Preceding his loss to Anderson Silva back at UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) 117, it was revealed Sonnen had an overly high level of T/E (Testosterone/Epitestosterone) in his urine sample—16-9:1. The allowed ratio by NSAC (Nevada State Athletic Commission) is 6-1, which means he was nearly three-times over said ratio.
For the aforementioned infraction, the Oregon native was subsequently incurred with a 12-month suspension (later reduced to six-months on appeal).
That said, the debate rages on as to whether a fighter utilizing TRT gives them an added advantage.
Apropos Sonnen’s case, some sections of the MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) community believe TRT was the reason he had such a thoroughgoing edge over Silva in their championship bout back in August of 2010.
As Sonnen has alluded to his continued use of TRT, the assumption is, it must’ve been in play (presumably at the allowed ratio of 6-1 or less) during his last two outings against Brian Stann and Michael Bisping.
Still, with NSAC giving a therapeutic use exemption for his UFC 148 encounter with Silva, it’s safe to say that thus far Sonnen hasn’t broken any rules.
UFC 148 is scheduled for July 7, 2012, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.