Elite Special Forces: Physiological Description and Ergogenic Influence of Blood Infusion
ARMY RESEARCH INST OF ENVIRONMENTAL MEDICINE NATICK MA
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We measured the physical exercise capabilities of U.S. Army Special Forces soldiers male and determined the subsequent ergogenic influence of autologous blood reinfusion. Twelve subjects Ss completed maximal exercise treadmill testing in a comfortable T sub a20 C, T sub dp 9 C environment. Six Ss were later transfused with a 600 ml autologous red blood cell 50 Hct NaCl glucose-phosphate solution and completed identical maximal exercise tests 3 and 10-days post-transfusion. Pre-transfusion, the 12 Ss had a maximal oxygen uptake VO2 max of 4.36 or - 0.56 1min and 55 or - 4 mlkgmin with a heart rate of 188 or - 10 bmin and ventilatory equivalent for oxygen of 37 or - 3. For the 6 reinfused Ss, hemoglobin and red cell volume RCV increased 10 P0.05 and 11 P0.05, respectively, post-transfusion. Reinfusion increased P0.05 VO2 max from 4.28 or - 0.22 1min 54 or - 5 mlkgmin to 4.75 or - 0.42 1min 60 or - mlkgmin and 4.63 or -0.21 1min 59 or - 6 mlkgmin at 3 and 10 days post-transfusion, respectively. No significant relationship was found between the individual change in RCV and VO2 max values pre- to post-transfusion. We conclude that Special Forces soldiers have high levels of aerobic fitness that can be further increased by blood reinfusion for at least 10 days.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Medicine and Medical Research