Drugs in sport: Dope warning for Cuban

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The Independent Online
The first drugs story of the Atlanta Games was announced yesterday, when Estela Rodriguez, the Cuban silver medal-winner in the women's heavyweight judo competition, was reprimanded for taking a diuretic, furocemide.

A Games spokesman said: "It is not considered a doping case. The athlete should have told her team doctor she was taking that drug."

Although diuretics have no performance-enhancing properties, it is widely believed that they have been in common use by athletes to help flush their bodies of other banned drugs.

Competitors in sports with weight categories are also known to use diuretics to ensure they "make the weight". In 1988, the British judo player Kerrith Brown was stripped of his bronze medal after showing up positive for a diuretic.