In the aftermath of Cris Cyborg’s failed out-of-competition drug test, the MMA world awaits as USADA investigate the case.
Cyborg faces a potential suspension from USADA as well as a fine. However, there is some hope in her quest to prove innocence and it comes in the form of a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE).
When an athlete is recommended by a doctor to take a banned substance for medical reasons, they can petition USADA for an exemption of the substance, or a TUE.
This doesn’t mean athletes can take steroids or testosterone with a doctor’s note. But if an athlete has a legit reason for needing a non-performance-enhancer on USADA’s banned list, they may be allowed to do so if granted permission.
A TUE can be difficult to obtain, there’s an investigation into the matter, doctors review treatments, discuss alternatives, and then if accepted they can approve. Usually this process happens before treatment, but due to the nature of Cyborg’s situation she is applying for a retroactive TUE, after taking it, and hopes that USADA will see she was under the direct care of a qualified professional on non-performance enhancers.
ESPN reports that Cris Cyborg has brought in an expert attorney in Howard Jacobs to aid in their fight. A man who has represented the likes of Jon Jones, Brock Lesnar and Tim Means.
Cris Cyborg has retained attorney Howard Jacobs (rep'd Jones, Lesnar, Means) in USADA case. Applying for retroactive TUE. Takes a few weeks.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) January 9, 2017