Faust's Gold documented the former East German doping machine that produced an incredible number of world records, and Olympic gold medals including the women's 400M world mark held my Marita Koch. The doping regime culminated in 13 women's swimming gold medals at the 1986 Montreal Olympics. The systematic doping also produced birth defects in their children, and emotional problems in the former GDR athletes.
The doping machine isolated gifted German Democratic Republic athletes for intense training, surreptitious administration of anabolic steroids, and biological testing done to beat the anti-doping tests. The doping machine included trainers, physicians, coaches, government officials, the Stasi (GDR secret police), and politicians to the highest level. Now it appears that the doped athletes continue to suffer heinous consequences from the covert anabolic steroids they ingested or injected.
German research physician Giselher Spitzer, presented evidence to the Play the Game conference in Iceland, that documents the horrific results of anabolic steroids given to teenage women. The Sydney Morning Herald carries the report. Most striking was the high rate of birth defects suffered by these athlete's children:
THEY are the 69 children of a small part of the drugged generation of sporting stars. But instead of inheriting their parent's athletic ability, the children have been shown to have serious medical issues at rates much higher than that of the general population. Seven have physical deformities and four are mentally handicapped.
Frightening damage from East Germany's systematic doping of two decades of elite and promising sports stars in the 1970s and '80s has emerged in the next generation, according to the German researcher Giselher Spitzer.
A recently published two-year study of 52 Olympic and elite-level former East German athletes, now aged between 40 and 60, conducted by the Germany University, Humboldt, has revealed shocking medical consequences of the forced consumption of anabolic steroids.
Dr Spitzer said in addition to the high rate of physical and mental handicaps in the offspring of the 52 athletes, more than a quarter of the children have allergies and 23 per cent have asthma.
He said the risk of miscarriage and stillbirth in the athletes was a staggering 32 times higher than in the normal German population.
...38 per cent had severe depression with suicidal tendencies and 32 of the 52 had had therapy for psychiatric issues. Dr Spitzer said the study revealed a quarter of those studied had suffered some form of cancer.
As Robin Parisotto states in Sportigo:
It seems that for some athletes the rewards totally outweigh the risks. This drug is the one that was force-fed to thousands of East German athletes as part of its state-sponsored doping program; anabolic steroid. These anabolic steroids are still producing unintended consequences further compounded by the fact that off-spring of athletes involved in the massive doping program are now suffering as well. Dr Giselher Spitzer from the Humboldt University in Germany has just released the frightening numbers above, ones which echo many previous stories.
For the protagonists of legalized doping, take a good hard look at Dr Spitzer's report and try and convince the public that legal doping would overcome the current problems. In any case why should the rights of the cheats trample over the rights of athletes who do not want to take drugs which may cause real medical problems later in life? Have the cheats lost sight of the fact that sport is in this bloody mess because of their actions, not the actions of clean athletes. When the ‘corporates’ invaded sport and waved the cheque books in front of them they could have said no to doping.
Remember, Victor Conte designed BALCO along the lines of the East German doping machine.