Testing & Intelligence

The aim of testing is to protect clean athletes through the detection and deterrence of doping.

Any athlete under the testing jurisdiction of the WBSC may be tested at any time, with no advance notice, in- or out-of-competition, and be required to provide a urine or blood sample or blood for a Dried Blood Spot (DBS) analysis.

Sample Collection Process

  1. Athlete Selection: An athlete can be selected for testing at any time and any place;
  2. Notification: A Doping Control Officer (DCO) or chaperone will notify the athlete of their selection and outline their rights and responsibilities;
  3. Reporting to the Doping Control Station: The athlete should report to the doping control station immediately after being notified. The DCO may allow a delay in reporting for a valid reason;
  4. Sample Collection Equipment: The athlete is given a choice of individually sealed sample collection vessels and kits to choose from;
  5. They must inspect the equipment and verify the sample code numbers;
  6. Collecting the sample:
    • For a urine sample:
      • Providing the sample: The athlete will be asked to provide the sample under the direct observation of a DCO or witnessing chaperone of the same gender;
      • Volume: A minimum 90mL is required for urine samples. If the first sample is not 90mL, the athlete may be asked to wait and provide an additional sample;
      • Splitting the sample: The athlete will split their sample into A and B bottles;
      • Sealing the samples: The athlete will seal the A and B bottles in accordance with the DCO’s instructions;
      • Measuring specific gravity: The DCO will measure the specific gravity of the sample to ensure it is not too dilute to analyse. If it is too dilute, the athlete may be asked to provide additional samples.
    • For a blood sample:
      • The athlete will be asked to remain seated and relaxed for at least 10 minutes before undergoing venipuncture (only for the Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) blood samples);
      • The Blood Collection Officer (BCO) will ask for the athlete’s non-dominant arm, apply a tourniquet to the upper arm, and clean the skin at the puncture site;
      • The BCO will draw blood from the athlete and fill each Vacutainer blood tube with the required volume of blood;
      • The BCO will place the Vacutainer tubes into the A and B kits (only one vial may be necessary if the blood sample is collected as part of an ABP program).
    • For a Dried Blood Spot (DBS) analysis:
      • The DCO/BCO will assess the most suitable location for the puncture that is unlikely to adversely affect the athlete or their sporting performance (e.g., finger of a non-dominant hand/arm);
      • The athlete will warm the sample collection site (especially in case the hands are cold);
      • The DCO/BCO will disinfect the blood sample site with a sterile disinfectant pad or swab;
      • The DCO/BCO will collect the blood from the fingertips (with cellulose based cards) or from the upper arm (with microneedles devices);
      • The DCO/BCO will transfer the DBS samples into a secure kit that is labelled as A&B.
  7. Completing the Doping Control Form (DCF): The athlete will check and confirm that all of the information is correct, including the sample code number and their declaration of medications and/or products they have used. They will also be asked their consent for the use of the sample for research purposes. They will receive a copy of the DCF and should keep it.
  8. Laboratory Process: All samples are sent to WADA accredited laboratories for analysis.

Athlete Biological Passport

The Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) is an anti-doping technique introduced by WADA which consists in tracking the athlete's physiological parameters over time. The athlete incurs disqualification for doping in the event that abnormal and unjustified trends of these parameters are detected with respect to the typical profile of the athlete.

The ABP is integrated directly into ADAMS. There are fundamentally two kinds of approaches, namely Steroidal Module and Haematological Module:

Steroidal Module
The Steroidal Module inspects the athlete's level of steroids over time, establishing an athlete steroid profile. This technique is based on the analysis of the urine samples.

Haematological Module
The Haematological Module analyses the athlete’s blood variables over time and can signal the effects of blood doping, such as blood transfusion or the use of Erytrhopoiesis-Stimulating Agents (ESAs).

For more information, please click here.

What is the Technical Document for Sport Specific Analysis (TDSSA)?

The TDSSA is a mandatory document that must be implemented by all Anti-Doping Organisations (ADOs). It has the purpose to ensure that all ADOs conduct testing intelligence in an appropriate mode, carrying out a Minimum Level of Analysis (MLA) for particular prohibited substances and/or methods deemed to be at risk in certain sports. For answers to Frequently Asked Questions, please refer to TDSSA Supporting Document A that is available on the same link.

TDSSA and TDSSA Supporting Document A