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Blood Doping

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Blood Doping Blood doping does not involve the use of drugs. Blood is injected into the body to increase the number of red blood cells. Athletes usually inject their own blood, which has been removed earlier and stored, but it can come from another person. The athlete will often train at altitude before he or she removes some of their blood. This is to increase the number of red blood cells that are needed to carry oxygen to the working muscles by the use of haemoglobin. ...read more.


Haemoglobin is the protein contained in red blood cells that transports oxygen from the lungs to the working muscles. Blood doping, often called induced erythrocythemia, is the intravenous infusion of blood to produce an increase in the blood's oxygen carrying capacity. It is a procedure that begins with between 1 to 4 units of a person's blood (1 unit = 450 ml of blood) being withdrawn, usually several weeks before a key competition. The blood is then centrifuged and the plasma components are immediately reinfused while the remaining red blood cells are placed in cold storage. ...read more.


This is done by withdrawing a pint of blood from the athlete and storing it until the competition, at which point the blood is reinjected. Blood doping has disadvantages that are very dangerous. These include: * Overloading the circulatory system, increasing blood pressure and causing difficulties for the heart. * Kidney failure. * Transmission of AIDS and other diseases by injecting another person's blood. * Risk of infections if the procedure is done incorrectly or with equipment that has not been sterilized properly. * Extra thickness of the blood can lead to clotting, strokes and thrombosis. ...read more.

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