10 UFC Steroid Statistics, Trends and Facts

The UFC is one of the most brutal places on the planet, and it comes as no surprise that some would try anything to be the best - including Steroids.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is a company that hosts and promotes the sport of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), and was founded in Las Vegas, Nevada, in 1993. Since then it has grown to be the largest Pay-Per-View (PPV) event provider in the world, hosting 618 UFC events in 163 cities in 28 countries.

The UFC has grown to be the biggest and most popular MMA contest in the world, with the likes of Connor McGregor, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Daniel Cormier, and various others competing.

As with any professional sport, the use of Anabolic Steroids was bound to find its way in as a performance enhancer. Steroids can be defined as synthetic versions of certain Androgens found in the body, most commonly Testosterone and variants of Testosterone. That said, other performance enhancing durgs (PEDs) can also be found in the UFC.

To date, there have been more than 120 sanctions in the UFC for the use of performance enhancing drugs. We’re about to look at various statistics such as:

  • Most commonly used Steroids by UFC Athletes
  • Which athletes have been caught with the strongest Steroids
  • Which athletes have been caught the most
  • Females being caught with Steroids
  • The longest suspension in UFC ever

Key UFC Steroid Statistics

  • The UFC have only been testing for Steroids since 2015
  • The first suspension was for Gleison Tibua in 2015
  • 10% of all tests since 2015 have been positive
  • Athletes can be tested up to 10 times in a single calander year
  • The longest suspension was for Ruslan Magomedov, totaling 4 years

All UFC Steroid Statistics

1. The longest suspension by the USADA sanction was for Ruslan Magomedov in 2018.

In 2016 he was tested positive for Ostarine, after which he was suspended for two years. He then got caught in 2018 for using both Methyltestosterone and Stanozolol, both oral Steroids that increase strength and recovery dramatically

2. The most commonly used drug in the UFC is called Ostarine, which is known as a Selective Androgen Receptor Modulator.

Ostarine is known to increase strength, endurance, and might help with muscle growth as well. While Ostarine was created as a medical treatment, various athletes use it to boost performance. To date, 22 athletes have been found with Ostarine in their body

3. Not all busts have been for the use of PEDs.

Ion Cutelaba was suspended for 6 months in 2018 for a Blood Transfusion which could have increased both cardiovascular and muscular endurance. This is something a lot of cyclists will do as well. Paulo Costa and Jay Dee Penn were both suspended for Intravenous Infusions in 2019 and 2016 respectively.

4. Some athletes are banned for recreational drugs.

The Shortest Suspension in the UFC was in 2021 for Juancamilo Ronderos Alvis, as he was found to be using Cocaine.

5. The biggest suspension besides Ruslan Magomedov was issued to Ricardo Abreu.

He was supended for having the metabolite 19-norandrosterone (19-NA) in his blood, indicating he was using either Nandrolone or Boldenone. Some refer to this metabolite as the dream killer due to the fact that it can remain detectable in the body for up to 18 months

6. Adam Hunter is likely the UFC with the biggest amount of drugs being busted for.

In 2016 he was busted for Tamoxifen; Boldenone, Methandienone, Drostanolone, and Clenbuterol. Some of these are pure Steroids, while Tamoxifen is what an athlete would use to stop the development of Gyno tissue around the breasts due to the increase of Estrogen. He was suspended for 14 months.

7. There has been 23464 Total Tests conducted since 2015.

Over the past 7 years more than 1334 Athletes have been tested, some more thna 10 times in a single calandar year.

8. There are 9 main categories of banned susbtances in the UFC.

All of these are banned in competition, while some such as Narcotis and Cannibinoids are only banned in competition, but are legal out of competition.

9. Joe Rogan thinks 50 – 60% of all UFC athletes are doping

Show the amount of positive results per year increasing

Over the years there have been more and more people being busted for Steroid use. Joe Rogan estimated that 50 – 60% of UFC athletes are doping – back in 2015!

10. Brock Lesnar was fined $250 000 after testing positive for Clomiphene.

Brock Lesnar is a legend in the fighting world, but he was actually founf to be using Clomiphene at the UFC 200. His victory over Mark Hunt was overturned.


There is no denying the fact that Steroids are being abused in the UFC. There are various other PEDs that are used as well, and the usage has grown with the growth in popularity of the sport. This could be due to more pressure being put on fighters, or just competition between the different fighters.

As the testing procedures are developed more, we are bound to see more and more positive results.

Are UFC fighters on testosterone?

Unless they are on medically prescribed Testosterone (TRT), then they are not allowed. That said, there are various UFC fighters who have been found to be using Testosterone and other Steroids.

How common are steroids in UFC?

Around 10% of all tests since 2015 have been positive for some kind of PED, meaning more than 2300 tests have been postitive for something.

Is testosterone allowed in MMA?

Only if they are prescribed it by a medical professional.

Are UFC fighters allowed to take supplements?

Certain supplements, yes. There are various legal supplements like whey protein and creatine that UFC fighters are allowed to use.

Can UFC fighters take caffeine?

While fighters can take caffeine, they are capped at “β€œurinary caffeine threshold level of 15 mcg/mL that equals to approximately six to eight cups of brewed coffee (80-100 mg/8 oz) two to three hours prior to competition,” according to the NCAA.”

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NIDA. 2018, August 12. Anabolic Steroids DrugFacts

Spiller HA, James KJ, Scholzen S, Borys DJ. A descriptive study of adverse events from clenbuterol misuse and abuse for weight loss and bodybuilding. Subst Abus. 2013;34(3):306-12. doi: 10.1080/08897077.2013.772083. PMID: 23844963.

Bhasin S. Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators as Function Promoting Therapies. J Frailty Aging. 2015;4(3):121-2. doi: 10.14283/jfa.2015.65. PMID: 27030938; PMCID: PMC6039107.

Ayotte C. Significance of 19-norandrosterone in athletes’ urine samples. Br J Sports Med. 2006 Jul;40 Suppl 1(Suppl 1):i25-9. doi: 10.1136/bjsm.2006.028027. PMID: 16799098; PMCID: PMC2657496.



Daniel Louwrens BSc PT

Daniel Louwrens BSc PT | Writer

Daniel Louwrens is a well-rounded fitness professional with over 10 years of experience in bodybuilding and fitness. He holds a BSc in Chemistry from the University of Western Cape and is a certified International Personal Trainer and Nutritionist. He is also a skilled bodybuilder and head coach for Muscle and Brawn. With his knowledge and expertise, he provides personalized training, nutrition, and recovery guidance to help clients reach their fitness goals.

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