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Furosemide is one of the most powerful diuretics, if not the most powerful. In medical practice, it is used in cases of severe poisoning, when the poison has not yet managed to enter the blood and can be excreted from the body with water. It is also used in cases of a sharp rise in blood pressure, which arises from excessive water retention in the body. Furosemide signals to the body about the need for immediate excretion of both intra- and intercellular fluid, which can in some cases lead to irreparable consequences. furosemide side effects

Furosemide is a powerful diuretic, one of the most powerful diuretics. In fact, the drug is not doping, but it is widely used in unofficial sports medicine, is listed in the list of drugs banned for admission by athletes. Nevertheless, furosemide remains one of the most popular means in sports.

5-reductase inhibitors include finasteride and dutasteride. In clinical practice, these drugs are used in the treatment of prostatic adenoma. The history of the use of 5α-reductase inhibitors begins on June 19, 1992, when the US FDA authorized the use of finasteride for the treatment of men with symptoms of benign prostatic hypertrophy. In October 2002, a new drug appeared on the pharmaceutical market – Avodart® (dutasteride), inhibiting 5a-reductase of both types. The use of these drugs in sports as masking agents is due to the fact that their reception makes it difficult to identify anabolic steroids.

Why athletes need diuretics?

Among athletes engaged in bodybuilding, loop diuretics are popular, as they have an instant effect. These include the popular furosemide. But when using them, you should be careful, as they cause severe dehydration due to increased temperature and physical stress. The body loses a lot of potassium along with the liquid.

Athletes use diuretics before the competition to remove excess fluid from the subcutaneous tissue. Then on the stage the body will look more relief. If you enter the drug intravenously, the effect will come faster. A side effect of this may be a decrease in the volume of muscle mass. More experienced athletes use diuretic additives in tablets for a couple of days before the competition.

Of course, they are weaker and slower, but unlike synthetic drugs, they do not disturb the electrolyte balance.

Many athletes take special sports nutrition, which already includes natural diuretics. They remove excess fluid without affecting the muscle tissue, without causing a deficiency of potassium and a number of other side effects inherent in synthetic drugs. Sports diuretics for special purposes can not be used for a long time.

Athletes who specialize in bodybuilding use diuretic furosemide usually in the following way: take half or a whole 40-milligram tablet and expect an effect. Some athletes repeat this procedure several hours later 1-2 times. It should be remembered that furosemide is the strongest diuretic and one of the most dangerous drugs in the medicamental arsenal of bodybuilders. Side effects include: hemodynamic disorders, dizziness, dehydration, muscle spasms, vomiting, vascular collapse, diarrhea, a feeling of malaise. In extreme conditions, cardiac arrest may occur. It is possible that this caused the death of two sportsmen specializing in bodybuilding: the Austrian bodybuilder Heinz Salmayer, who died in the 1980s, and Mohammed Benaziza in October 1992.

Dosage and Administration

Even in a bodybuilder with a low level of subcutaneous fat, the definition of muscles can not be seen due to the interlayer of water under the skin. Diuretics help to remove this water from the body and, as a result, increase the definition of muscles. Do you remember Olympia in 2001? The sharp improvement in the shape of Ronnie Coleman in the evening part of the competition program is due to the use of furosemide and the removal of excess water from under the skin. So for the last 20-25 years, diuretics have been and remain an integral part of competitive bodybuilding. It is also possible to use diuretics when an abnormally large amount of water accumulates in the body as a result of the use of anabolic steroid preparations that aromatize or manifest the estrogenic or progestogenic activity of anabolic steroid preparations. But in this case it is accepted to use milder drugs.

Another area of use of diuretics in general and furosemide in particular – the disguise of taking prohibited drugs.

Furosemide is available in two forms: in the form of tablets containing 20 or 40 mg of active ingredient, or as a solution for intravenous administration. In the form of a solution, the drug exhibits its properties much brighter and, most importantly, faster, drying the body almost in the blink of an eye.

The usual daily dose of the oral form of furosemide does not exceed 40 mg, athletes start taking the drug 4-5 days before the competition. Injectable furosemide is applied only on the day of the competition or one day before the show. If it is necessary to enhance the effect of oral furosemide, simultaneously with it, you can take about 50 mg of aldactone or hydrochlorothiazide.


After ingestion, the tablet comes into action rather quickly – the effect comes in about 15-30 minutes. There are strong urge to urinate. Sensations (based on the personal experience of the author) are approximately the following: every five minutes I want to go to the bathroom, as if the whole day was not possible to do it. The volumes of the effluent are proportional to the sensations. The effect lasts for 3-4 hours. In this case, calcium, magnesium and potassium are washed out of the body.

Furosemide begins to act almost immediately. The action lasts 3-4 hours. Weight loss is achieved very quickly. The drug is used for oral and intravenous administration. The second option helps to achieve a faster result.

But the rapid loss of water can lead to the fact that the muscles lose their shape, because the muscle mass is partly composed of water. Therefore, it is better to use safe diuretics of plant origin. Natural remedies are preferable, since they have virtually no contraindications and side effects.

Side effects of Furosemide

The normal functioning of the muscles – contraction and relaxation – is based on intracellular electrolytic balance. Violation of this balance due to a decrease in the level of electrolytes in the loss of intracellular fluid can lead, for example, to the occurrence of spontaneous seizures (the muscle contracts but does not relax). If it concerns the muscles of the press or the calves, then everything is not so scary. But if it touches the heart … Death of Momo Benaziza in October 1992 came just as a result of convulsions that held the heart muscle. furosemide dosage

There are side effects for every drug, but there are really a lot of them. Experts recommend using the drug only in extreme cases, in which the use of other medicines is impossible, but certainly not in sports. Furosemide is indispensable when you need to urgently remove fluid (eg, cerebral edema), but otherwise its use is highly questionable and possible only according to the doctor’s prescription.

In addition to seizures, a massive intake of furosemide is accompanied by diarrhea, nausea, dry mouth. After the end of the drug is very often observed “swimming” of athletes with water, sometimes to such an extent that even the usual movements are given with difficulty.


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