I accept cookies from this site

We use cookies to help make this website better. To find out more about the cookies we use, please read our Cookies Policy. If you continue without changing your cookie settings, you consent to this use, but if you want, you can find information in our Cookies Policy about how to remove cookies by changing your settings.

Keep Rugby Clean e-learning
Be super natural - Keep Rugby Clean

Learn about doping in Rugby and the importance of staying clean. Our educational resource will show you all you need to know.

• About IRB Keep Rugby Clean • Ambassadors • Doping Control Procedures • Player Whereabouts • Therapeutic Use Exemptions • Prohibited substances • Dietary supplements • Consequences of doping

Methylhexaneamine (MHA)

Download this resource as a PDF

What is MHA?

MHA is a stimulant originally derived from the geranium plant but is now mostly synthetically produced. It was first developed as a nasal decongestant in the 1940s but can now be found in dietary or nutritional supplements under many different names other than MHA.

Some products which openly contain, or have been identified in certain countries to contain, MHA or its variants include, Hemo Rage, Jack3d, OxyElite Pro, 1.M.R., Mesomorph, Rocked, Crack, USN Anabolic Nitro, Ergolean Amp 2, DynaPep, Core Zap, C4 Extreme, Nutrimax Burner, NitroX, IBE X-Force, Fusion Geranamine, ClearShot, Black Cats, and Musclespeed. Please note this is not an exhaustive list but provides examples of some commercial supplements which contain, or have been identified in certain countries to contain, MHA or its variants.

MHA is classed as a Specified Stimulant prohibited In Competition only by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). MHA has caused a number of positive cases in Rugby for both amateur and professional Players.

Back to top

What are the effects of MHA?

The stimulant effects are said to be less than amphetamine and ephedrine and slightly stronger than caffeine. MHA is marketed as a pre work-out supplement with thermogenic or stimulant properties and may have mild stimulant effects but there is no publicly available data on its specific mechanism of action, absorption, pharmokinectics, metabolism or excretion.

Anecdotal evidence suggests the effects of MHA last between 1-3 hours, and that it increases focus, heart rate and productivity whilst other users have reported increased anxiety, nervousness and sweating.

Back to top

Related substances and other names

MHA has many different variants/names which Players should check for individually if considering the use of any dietary or nutritional supplements. They include but are not limited to:

Methylhexaneamine; Methylhexanamine; DMAA (dimethylamylamine); Geranamine; Forthane; Forthan; Floradrene; 2-hexanamine, 4-methyl-; 2-hexanamine, 4-methyl- (9CI); 4-methyl-2-hexanamine; 1,3-dimethylamylamine; 4-Methylhexan-2-amine; 1,3-dimethylpentylamine; 2-amino-4-methylhexane; Pentylamine, 1, 3-dimethyl-; pelargonium graveolens; pelargonium extract; geranium, geranium oil or geranium root extract.


In some cases, the labels and ingredient lists on products are

not complete.

Players should also be aware that products marketed under the same brand in different countries may contain different ingredients which may not always appear on the product label.

Back to top

What is the sanction for a positive test for MHA?

An Adverse Analytical Finding for MHA carries with it a

potential four year sanction.

Back to top

Strict Liability

Players must be aware that, under the policy of strict liability, they are solely responsible for any substance found in their body (regardless of whether the substance was contained in a dietary or nutritional supplement prepared or recommended by team management, medical personnel or other trusted persons and/or whether or not it was listed on the label of the product). Those Players who use dietary or nutritional supplements do so

at their own risk and are advised to exercise extreme caution.

Back to top

Keep Rugby Clean Ambassadors
View resources available in:
    English        Français        Español        Русский        Italiano        Română        日本語        Português        ქართული        Vakaviti        Gagana Samoa        Faka-Tonga        简体中文   
Useful links
Download the
IRB Anti-Doping Handbook
Watch sample collection video
WADA Prohibited List
Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUEs)
Stay informed: read
The IRB Guide to Therapeutic Use Exemptions
TUE application form
Doping Reports: 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002