A spokesperson for Cooper Complete has sent SwimSwam a statement saying that it is aware of the reports that one of its products, Cooper Complete Elite Athlete, has been blamed for causing a positive doping test for American swimmer Madisyn Cox. The company says that while it is aware of the reports, they are conducting further testing to determine if the contamination was in fact caused by their product.
Cox was originally suspended for 2 years, but on appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, armed with new tests showing the substance as being present in a multi-vitamin she took, but not on that multi-vitamin’s label, that was reduced to 6 months.
Trimetazidine, used in some parts of the world to treat heart conditions, is not approved by the FDA for use in the United States. Still, what Cooper Complete calls “microscopic traces” found its way into the Cooper Complete Elite Athlete multivitamins. While all parties have agreed that the amount of Trimitazidine in Cox’s blood and in the supplement was very small, it was enough to trigger a positive doping test.
On Friday, SwimSwam reported that the supplement, which previously had a 5-star rating, was no longer available on Cooper’s website. In response to the statement, SwimSwam requested more information on where the factory producing the supplement was located, if Cooper had pulled all other production from that facility, and if they had tested any of their other supplements for contamination.
Update: after posting, Cooper responded that the multivitamins are produced at a manufacturing facility in California. They say that they use more than one manufacturer, and that all of their supplements are currently being tested by an independent third party testing laboratory. This raises more questions about how a manufacturing facility in California would become contaminated with a substance that isn’t for sale in the United States, especially given the generally-high cost of manufacturing in California.
Cox, who swam collegiately at the University of Texas, was a member of the 2017-2018 US National Team, the 2015 Big 12 Conference Swimmer of the Year, and won 2 medals at the 2017 World Championships: gold as a prelims swimmer on the 800 free relay, and bronze individually in the 200 IM.
Cooper Complete’s Full Statement:
We are deeply concerned about the reports regarding one of our vitamin products. The health and safety of Cooper Complete customers is our top priority. We learned from recent news reports that the suspension of USA swimmer Madisyn Cox earlier this year was due to a substance found in her routine drug test that has been linked back in the news reports to a particular lot of Cooper Complete Elite Athlete multivitamins. The test results showed microscopic traces of Trimetazidine. Trimetazidine is not a substance that is in our product formulation and Cooper Complete immediately contacted the multivitamin manufacturing facility and has identified an independent third party testing laboratory to perform further testing. The product that Ms. Cox purchased is no longer in our inventory.