Most fighters are content to let the smoke clear after testing positive for steroid use, sliding into the shadows throughout the attached suspension in hopes fans will either forget or at least forgive the transgression. However, former Strikeforce champion Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos is in a unique position after dominating her peers while dodging constant rumors of drug use based on her physique.

Traces of stanozolol in her system after a December title-defense seemingly confirmed speculation Santos had gained an illegal competitive advantage over all of her opponents and slipped up after having previously beaten the system. Now, with her credibility as a competitor in serious doubt, Santos is attempting to repair her image by speaking out against steroid use and taking extra steps to prove she doesn’t need banned substances to excel in the cage.

“I do not condone the use of steroids as an athlete and think it is a horrible thing. I made a mistake of trusting someone in my camp and it has cost me the belt and made me look like a cheater. I am not a cheater. I have passed every drug test and never used steroids knowingly,” said the 26-year old in a statement to MMAPrime before stating her own accountability in the matter, adding, “Everything I take and put in my body is my responsibility. I take responsibility for the results and have publicly apologized to Hiroko (Yamanaka), Strikeforce, the CSAC, and my fans.”

To be as transparent about the process as possible, Santos has made changes to her life, even going above and beyond by submitting samples regularly to a commission-recognized lab.

“I have eliminated certain people from my training camp. I am taking monthly drug tests at the same laboratory that the CSAC uses to show I do not take steroids,” revealed the 10-1 Santos, vowing she would eventually be back and better than ever.

“I’m still training. I’m never going to stop. Everything I did for MMA is not going to stop here. I will be back.”