Two of three in the panel of the court for arbitration for Sports, Cas, stands behind the decision to reject the OLYMPIC gold medalist Caster Semenyas appeal of the testosterongränser as the international association of athletics federations, the IAAF, is now the face for the female middle distance runner with naturally high levels of the hormone.
Despite the fact that the Cas mean that the rules are discriminatory, they are considered reasonable to impose in order to protect the female athletics.
at the same time expresses the panel strong concern for the practical implementation.
Angelica Hirschberg, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Karolinska institute, has been working to develop the regulatory framework, and was an expert witness for the IAAF in the process in the Cas. She will also be responsible for assessing the people as it is about.
it is a historic decision.
– It is ultimately about justice, and to protect the right of women to compete on equal terms in a female category.
the regulatory Framework applies to women with DSD (differences in sex development). They have a chromosome set that is XY, not XX like most women, and often develops testicles, which can produce male levels of testosterone.
middle distance runner with DSD must now take medication to suppress testosterone production in order to compete. Most XX women have during the 2 nanomol testosterone per litre, while women with XY chromosomes can have ten to 20 times more.
that the rules will be considered a ”living document”, and will likely be revised in future.
– It is a thing that we now have more on the feet regarding scientific facts, but then will this be implemented in practice, and then some difficulties arise.
the Rules does not mean that all women will get their testosterone levels tested, but people will be investigated ”if suspicions arise,” says Angelica Hirschberg.
One of the points that the Cas points out as potentially problematic terms of the side effects that can occur in individuals to lowering their testosterone levels with the help of p-pills, p-spray, p-rod, or the like.
– Lower the levels to a normal female level, one can experience various side effects, it can be hot flushes and sweating, similar to klimakteriesymptom. And it can be experienced as uncomfortable. But they disappear in many cases when the reading has stabilized. But we also need to get more experience, because this is a very unusual case, " says Angelica Hirschberg.
that performance is worsened, which is the purpose.
– But the individuals can perceive it as a negative side effect of the treatment.
" Yes, it can. Now we have set a limit which is very generous, 5 nanomol per litre. But of course, it has levels which may be over 20, so it is a powerful reduction.
the Rules have inter alia been criticised by the UN human rights council and Human Rights Watch. Medical association the World Medical Association calls on doctors not to participate in the implementation of them.
– For a single individual with such a condition I can agree that it can be seen as unfair, for this is not doping. But for female sport to survive, it is my belief that you must have a female and a male category in most sports, otherwise women would never have a reasonable chance. And the factor that can best explain the difference in achievement between men and women is testosterone levels, says Angelica Hirschberg.
over the Cas decision.
"It was the worst I've heard," says Erik Boye, retired professor in cell biology, when he gets to know about the end.
He has, together with the american political scientist Roger Pielke, Jr. and the south african idrottsvetaren Ross Tucker reviewed one of the studies that the IAAF has presented as the basis for the regulatory framework.
" I can't say much about what I think is true, however, I can say something about the evidence that has been presented. And they are not convincing. It can happen that they have no better data than the one I have seen. But it is in any case not published, " says Erik Boye, who points out that he has not seen the judgment, which is not public yet.
Among other IAAF-linked Stéphane Bermon is located behind the study, which claims to show how big the advantage is increased testosterone in various branches.
published limited HOWEVER, testosterongränserna to apply only löpgrenar between 400 meters and a mile, because you said that the advantage of the high testosterone was the greatest there.
The three researchers have identified results in the data that have been counted twice, or that it is not possible to find a basis for.
the Study was the only basis, they launched those rules, if increased testosterone. And it is full of errors, and does not show at all that the IAAF claims, " says Erik Boye.
– It is pure cheating, they are using the wrong data. But avoid through with it, unfortunately.
as the Cas is concerned is the evidence that the DSD-women have an advantage in the 1,500 meters and a mile. Cas calls on the IAAF to wait to introduce testosterongränser there, until more data are available.
the Background to it is the much-criticized study, says Erik Boye. In it appeared a very small advantage on the distances.
"But the IAAF wanted to stop Caster Semenya, so they included the 1,500 meters and a mile," he says.
Angelica Hirschberg says that the study in question was discussed during the Cas process, and that the authors have responded to the criticism, as ”not quite agree”.
only the study behind the rules, " she says.
– There are many studies overall, but also the practical experience we have with these cases. And it is not possible to publish, for then one would reveal which individuals it is all about, " she says.
Among the ground as she brought for Cas, there was a study that she led, which is not yet published. Therefore, she can't say how big the advantage is the elevated testosterone levels will give according to what transpires in it, but says that advantage is ”significant”.
very few individuals. Angelica Hirschberg says that it can be a 50,000-or 20.0000 who have any DSD condition. Therefore, it is not possible to implement a few large-scale studies on them.
– It is the collected knowledge about what the testosterone is for the importance of performance, even in women, which is the basis for the rules. We have also been able to show that XY-women are more common in top athletes compared to the general population. And we have been able to see how they are performing compared with XX-women. And this is where you see this major difference.
– If you think that it may be sufficient with one or a few individuals in a sport that they dominate and as good as always end up on the podium, in front of XX-women, then, plays the major role.
" these individuals are still women, and that means they have something which makes them stand out from normal men. It depends on what condition they have, for example, you can be different and sensitive to the level of testosterone. It is, of course, a variation even when the case of such individuals, in what they are doing. Theoretically, one would expect that they are not performing as good as the male athletes.
" that is What the whole trial and the discussion has been about. What we know today, so it means a very great advantage to have the testosterone in the male level. It is about the degree of advantage. And in this case, we believe that it is so big and has such an impact on the sport is that it is not fair.
also there is a risk to DSD-the exploitation of women for their idrottsförmåga and not get the treatment that they would have to unless the rules were introduced. A part of the permits in the DSD means a higher risk for cancer.
Erik Boye does not see the danger of not having a testosterongräns.
– You can come to a decision that we don't care about testosterone levels. It is not the ones who decide if you are a woman. There are many different factors, " he says.
They are acknowledged as women, they are women. Let them run. All of the top athletes have a particular advantage. Some are long, some are small and sharp. And so they go to the sport where they think they can succeed best. The same thing applies to Caster Semenya.
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