Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "

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Combination of Hydroxycut and painkillers destroys muscles

An eighteen-year-old amateur athlete from Salt Lake City in the US developed serious muscle damage after taking the slimming supplement Hydroxycut. Doctors at the University of Utah have written about the case in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy. But the guy didn't just take Hydroxycut, he also took painkillers.

Combination of Hydroxycut and painkillers destroys muscles
The young man went to a doctor because he was experiencing pain in his legs and had lost strength in his leg muscles. He was taking four capsules a day of 220 mg Hydroxycut and he had just stepped up his training programme. The blood analyses showed up increased concentrations of all kinds of enzymes and metabolites that are linked to muscle damage creatinine, aspartate transaminase, transaminase and alkaline phosphatase. His creatine kinase level was through the roof at thirteen thousand units per litre. Rhabdomyolysis was the diagnosis.

Rhabdomyolysis is a condition in which muscle tissue breaks down. The muscle cells leak their contents into the blood, and this in turn leads to kidney damage.

The guy had taken Adderall briefly an amphetamine given to people with ADHD to help him study. And he had stepped up his training programme to get fitter. The Hydroxycut supplement was meant to help him with this.

But it wasn't just the Hydroxycut that was responsible. The guy also took painkillers.Because he didn't like pain, he used all sorts, like naproxen and cyclobenzaprine. As a result he didn't notice what was happening to his muscles.

Behold the tragedy of the synthetic generation. Without pills the synthetic generation is incapable of learning. Without pills the synthetic generation is incapable of hard training. That's not such a problem. But the synthetic generation can't deal with pain either.

Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2009 Jan 15;66(2):142-8.