No Suspension for UFC Fighter Flagged for Meldonium

Meldonium, a performance enhancing drug on the World Anti Doping Agency’s prohibited list, has recently come to the international spotlight when tennis star Maria Sharapova was flagged for the substance.

The substance was added to WADA’s prohibited list on January 1, 2016 however some controversy exists with positive tests as there is uncertainly as to the duration of the drug’s elimination rate with current testing.

The UFC has now published a press release that Daniel Omielanczuk was flagged by USADA for a potential violation involving the substance.  Interestingly, USADA has decided not to issue a provisional suspension and he will be allowed to compete later this month.  The full UFC statement reads as follows:

The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) informed Daniel Omielanczuk of a potential Anti-Doping Policy Violation involving Meldonium, a prohibited substance on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List. USADA further informed UFC that due to recent WADA statements regarding the handling of Meldonium cases, they will not be issuing a provisional suspension to Omielanczuk at this time. Accordingly, Omielanczuk has not been removed from his scheduled bout against Alexy Oleinik in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on July 13, 2016.

Further information concerning WADA’s Meldonium statements may be found on the WADA website.

Athlete’s flagged for Meldoium should not consider this press release to mean they get a free pass.  If and when certainty is established with Meldonium elimination rates, USADA can take measures in the face of established Anti-Doping violations.

Update July 3, 2016 – WADA has published the following timetable for positive Meldonium findings that arise after January 1, 2016 .

Omielanczuk was only tested one time by USADA in 2016 at the time of this press release and the test was in the year’s first quarter (ie between January and March) so presumably his levels were on the lower level of the WADA threshold timetable for findings in 2016.

Omielanczuk 2016 test USADA

Further update July 3, 2016 – it is unclear if the South Dakota Athletic Commission is ok in licensing Mr. Omielanczuk for his upcoming bout but presumably they are.  I have written them the below e-mail and will update this article if/when they reply –


The UFC, who is scheduled to promote an event in your jurisdiction later this month, has recently issued a press release indicating that USADA, their in-house contracted anti-doping agency, informed UFC Fighter Daniel Omielanczcuk of a ‘potential Anti-Doping Policy Violation involving Meldonium”.

I have reviewed your regulations and note that while “drugs” appear prohibited there does not appear to be a comprehensive list of exactly which substances constitute prohibited drugs.  This this end I would appreciate if you can advise

  1. What substances are prohibited by the SDAC?
  2. Is Medlonium a prohibited substance?
  3. Is the SDAC taking any action given the UFC press release or is Omielanczuk being licenced for the upcoming event?
  4. If the SDAC is not taking any action given this press release kindly provide any explanation behind the SDAC’s decision.

I look forward to you reply.

2 thoughts on “No Suspension for UFC Fighter Flagged for Meldonium

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