Sir Bradley Wiggins has insisted that he was not looking to cheat the system when using a banned steroid before major races.
The five-time Olympic champion was among those to have had his medical records leaked by Russian hackers last week in an apparent revenge attack.
Wiggins has now defended his use of the powerful anti-inflammatory drug triamcinolone, which he puts down purely for use against allergies and respiratory problems and not to gain an "unfair advantage" over opponents.
"I've been a lifelong sufferer of asthma and I went to my team doctor at the time and we went in turn to a specialist to see if there's anything else we could do to cure these problems," he told BBC Sport. "And he in turn said: 'Yeah, there's something you can do but you're going to need authorisation from cycling's governing body (the UCI).'
"This was to cure a medical condition. This wasn't about trying to find a way to gain an unfair advantage, this was about putting myself back on a level playing field in order to compete at the highest level."
Wiggins was given permission to inject the banned substance just days before three major races - the 2011 and 2012 editions of the Tour de France and the 2013 Giro d'Italia.