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May 30, 1959


Author Affiliations

Springfield, Mass.

From the Department of Physiology, Springfield College.

JAMA. 1959;170(5):558-561. doi:10.1001/jama.1959.63010050017008a

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Recently there has been a great deal of agitation regarding the use of amphetamines in athletics. This agitation has been based mainly on rumors or secondhand information regarding one or two athletes who reportedly have admitted the use of amphetamine (Benzedrine) sulfate. It is, however, not known how these athletes would have performed with and without this drug under conditions of a controlled experiment.

While it is well known that amphetamines can cause euphoria and various degrees of insomnia which prolong wakefulness which might be used for activity, no reliable evidence exists that amphetamines are effective in increasing either endurance or speed in athletic activities. For this reason, the present study was undertaken. This study was so designed that it would be possible to detect the effect of the drug on endurance, recuperative ability, and speed of athletic performance under two conditions: "laboratory" conditions and under emotional stress during actual

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