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Plan to allow transsexuals into Games on back burner
www.chinaview.cn 2004-02-29 11:27:33

    ATHENS, Feb. 28 (Xinhuanet) -- A decision to allow transsexuals to take part in the Olympic Games was put off on Saturday as the IOC executive board failed to reach consensus.

    The decision-making body of the International Olympic Committeehad discussed the emotive subject at a meeting in the Greek capital but had failed to make much progress.

    "The discussion was a difficult discussion for (IOC medical director) Patrick Schamasch and myself who tried to explain a verydifficult medical problem," said IOC president Jacques Rogge.

    The rule would cover both male-to-female and female-to-male cases.

    Some contend that transsexual athletes have a physical advantage against other women, because men are believed to have higher levels of testosterone and greater muscle-to-fat ratio and heart and lung capacity.

    However, doctors say, testosterone levels and muscle mass drop after hormone therapy and sex-change surgery.

    "Even for me it is complicated," Rogge said, "It is much more complicated for someone with no medical training." Enditem

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