Ben Johnson’s Doctor Says Sprinter Took Steroids Because of Leg Injury

Associated Press

Ben Johnson’s personal physician was quoted as saying in a story in Thursday’s Toronto Star that the Canadian sprinter took the banned steroid stanozolol four months before the Olympic Games because he was depressed over a leg injury.

Dr. Jamie Astaphan, said that Johnson had suffered a pulled hamstring and took the drug but that it caused violent muscle spasms.

“He bought stanozolol or somebody bought it for him in Toronto,” Astaphan was quoted as saying. But immediately after taking the drug, the physician said, Johnson suffered the violent muscle spasms.

Astaphan said that Johnson was not on stanozolol when he won the 100-meter dash at the Seoul Games on Sept. 23. Johnson, who won in a world-record time of 9.79 seconds, was stripped of his gold medal after testing positive for stanozolol.


Johnson has denied knowingly taking the drug and Astaphan denied ever administering it.

Neither Astaphan nor Johnson could not be reached for comment Thursday.