Dr. Penchel Suspended By USADA For Prohibited Prescriptions To Costa Brothers

It appears that Paulo Costa won’t be the only one punished for a prohibited IV.

The United States Anti-Doping Agency announced that Brazil’s Dr. Lucas Penchel has been suspended two years for his part in the case.

Costa, a middleweight contender, was suspended for six months after he received an IV infusion that was over the legal limit. The suspension was retroactive to 2018, but dated back all the way to 2017 for the prohibited usage of an intravenous infusion. Costa and his brother ended up getting reduced suspensions after providing information to USADA.

“During its investigation, USADA learned that Dr. Penchel recommended and prescribed the 2017 prohibited IV infusions,” USADA stated in a release. “The UFC ADP applies to Athlete Support Personnel who are directly working with, treating, or assisting any UFC athlete in a professional or sport-related capacity. This includes, without limitation, acting as a manager, coach, trainer, second, corner man, agent, or medical personnel.”

The report goes on to say that Costa took a saline solution with stomach medication, and at UFC 217 took an IV over the legal limits placed by USADA after weigh-ins. Costa believed he was innocent as he needed help with his weight cut and was prescribed something that would help.

“In 2017, IV infusions and/or injections of more than 50 mL per 6-hour period were prohibited except for those legitimately received in the course of hospital admissions, surgical procedures, or clinical investigations under the UFC ADP,” USADA went on to say. “The UFC ADP has since been amended and now prohibits IV infusions and/or injections of more than 100 mL per 12-hour period… Applying the current rules, the 2017 infusions remain in violation of the UFC ADP.”

Dr. Penchel’s two-year period of ineligibility began on Mach 17, 2020. As a result, he won’t be an active member of the UFC until late 2022/early 2023. If anyone will take him, that is.

“Dr. Penchel, like all athlete support personnel, was entrusted to help athletes make safe and informed decisions, but instead, he violated anti-doping rules and his oath to best protect athletes’ health and safety,” said USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart. 

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