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Critically Speaking

Jun 26, 2019

Natural testosterone levels vary among all women.  Some elite female athletes exhibit elevated natural testosterone levels. Controversy exists as to whether these women should be eligible to compete in various events.  Dr. Alan Rogol, University of Virginia Medical School, Chief and Member of the American Board of Pediatrics, Sub-board in Endocrinology, advisor to the United States Anti-Doping Agency or USADA, and author of 600 scientific publications, discusses the concept of sex, testosterone and eligibility. 


  • There have been a number of cases in which the sex of an elite female athlete has been questioned. 
  • If a person is considered female at birth, raised as a female, and identifies as a female, why should they be disallowed to compete as a female in athletic events? 
  • Is there really a natural testosterone level that should be used as a cutoff for eligibility to compete? 
  • Other, genetic conditions exist which appear to confer advantages on male athletes, but they have not been disqualified from participation. 


"We are talking about women athletes with naturally occurring levels of testosterone, totally separate and distinct from the issue of doping." – Dr. Alan Rogol 


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