How does EPO affect performance?
Effects on Performance. EPO stimulates bone marrow to produce more red blood cells (RBC) and therefore haemoglobin. For this reason EPO is most commonly used amoungst endurance athletes as a higher RBC count means better oxygen transportation and so a higher rate of aerobic respiration.
Other possible problems experienced by users of EPO include:
- Rapid increases in blood pressure when the substance is introduced too quickly.
- Influenza-like symptoms, bone aches and shivering following injection.
- Skin reactions, allergy-like swelling at the site of injection.
- Liver or pancreatic damage.
- It will take time for EPO medication to work in your body. Most people take 1 to 2 months to feel better. This will depend on your body and the type of kidney disease you have.
- Epoetin injection is a man-made version of human erythropoietin (EPO). EPO is produced naturally in the body, mostly by the kidneys. It stimulates the bone marrow to produce red blood cells. If the body does not produce enough EPO, severe anemia can occur.
- So do anabolic steroids, human growth hormone (HGH), synthetic erythropoietin (EPO), and countless other drugs classified loosely and broadly as “performance enhancing drugs.”
Blood doping is a method of increasing athletic performance by artificially increasing an athlete's red blood cell (RBC) count. Because red blood cells carry oxygen to the muscles, having a higher RBC count can dramatically improve an athlete's aerobic capacity and delay fatigue.
- The production of recombinant human erythropoietin. Erythropoietin (EPO) is the glycoprotein hormone that promotes differentiation of erythroid progenitor cells in bone marrow. The normal kidney produces EPO to maintain erythrocyte for oxygen supply.
- The role of erythropoietin is to control red blood cell production by regulating the differentiation and proliferation of erythroid progenitor cells in the bone marrow. Produced primarily in the kidney, erythropoietin circulates in the plasma and acts on target cells in the bone marrow.
- The normal range for EPO levels can vary from 3.7 to 36 international units per liter (IU/L). Higher-than-normal levels may mean you have anemia. In severe cases of anemia, EPO levels in the blood may be a thousand times higher than normal. Unusually low levels may be because of polycythemia vera.
"Blood doping can be achieved either via blood transfusion or EPO injections. The performance enhancing material is the blood itself, or a hormone (EPO) that is naturally produced by the body. This is why it can be so difficult to detect," says Dr Caillaud.
- Lance Armstrong, (born September 18, 1971, Plano, Texas, U.S.), American cyclist, who was the only rider to win seven Tour de France titles (1999–2005) but who was later stripped of all his titles after an investigation revealed that he was the key figure in a wide-ranging doping conspiracy while he compiled his Tour
- In 1996, his own aggressive form of testicular cancer metastasized into his lymph nodes, lungs and brain. Armstrong underwent two surgeries, one to remove his cancerous testicle and another to remove two cancerous lesions on his brain. Over a three-month period, he received four rounds of chemotherapy.
- Stage wins per rider
Rank Name Wins 1 Eddy Merckx 34 2 Mark Cavendish 30 3 Bernard Hinault 28 4 André Leducq 25
Updated: 16th October 2019