The BIU welcomed a presentation by Dr Katja Mjøsund on the subject of Medication and Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUEs) at an IBU Physician Seminar on 14 June 2023, which included some useful tips on an important topic for athletes and coaches.

Dr Mjøsund is a consultant physician specialized in sports and exercise medicine. Her primary message to the participants at the seminar was that athletes need to be careful when taking any medication, while coaches and team doctors should also be aware of the risks, and ensure that athletes check any medication before using it.

Dr Mjøsund said: “Health is a prerequisite to performance, success and development in sports. Although endurance athletes are in general healthy, athletes can still fall ill and require medical treatment.

“When assessing medications in athletes it’s important to consider interactions, side effects, possible effects on performance and various regulations, primarily the list of prohibited substances and methods in sports, published yearly by WADA.”

Medications can be checked at The Global Drug Reference Online (Global DRO), which provides athletes with information about the status of certain medications based on the current World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited list.

Global GRO can be found at:

Alternatively, athletes can consult the Medication Database of their own National Anti-Doping Organisations (NADOs).

Meanwhile, more details on TUEs can be found on the BIU website, which explains the process for TUE Applications.

Dr Mjösund concluded: “Health and proper medical care are fundamental rights for athletes, as they are for everyone. Sometimes an athlete’s medical condition might require treatment with a prohibited substance or method. To ensure fairness and also a level playing field in sports, while also optimizing the medical care of the athlete, a rigorous process of Therapeutic Use Exemptions has been created.

“The TUE process is designed to ensure that the athlete gets the required medical care without any additional effect on performance (other than a return to the athlete’s normal state of health).”

Dr. Katja Mjøsund

Dr. Mjøsund is head physician at the Olympic Training Centre in Helsinki, a senior advisor at the Paavo Nurmi Centre, University of Turku, a sports medicine consultant at clinic Aava, and a team physician for national orienteering and biathlon teams.

She also has a strong research background and expertise in skeletal muscle energy metabolism, Dr Mjøsund serves as an expert for the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and a member of the International Testing Agency Therapeutic Use Exemption Committee.