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Alterations in blood volume following short-term supramaximal exercise.


To investigate the role of high-intensity intermittent exercise on adaptations in blood volume and selected hematological measures, four male subjects aged 19-23 yr [peak O2 consumption (VO2max) = 53 ml X min-1 X kg-1] performed supramaximal (120% VO2max) cycle exercise on 3 consecutive days. Each exercise session consisted of intermittent work performed as bouts of 1-min work to 4-min rest until fatigue or until a maximum of 24 repetitions had been completed. Measurements on blood samples were made before the exercise period and 24 h after the last exercise session. Plasma volume (PV) estimated using 131I-human serum albumin increased by 11.6% (3,504 vs. 3,912 ml; P less than 0.05). Total blood volume (TBV) based on PV and hematocrit (Hct) values increased by 4.5% (5,798 vs. 6,059 ml; P less than 0.05), whereas red cell volume (RCV) decreased by 6.4% (2,294 vs. 2,147 ml; P less than 0.05). Measurements of hematological indices indicated significant reductions (P less than 0.05) in whole-blood Hct (39.7 vs. 35.5%), hemoglobin concentration (15.5 vs. 13.9 g/100 ml), hemoglobin content (897 vs. 839 g), and red blood cell count (5.15 vs. 4.55 X 10(6) X mm-3). The findings of this study suggest that exercise intensity is a major factor in promoting exercise-induced hypervolemia and that rapid elevations in PV can be induced early in training.

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