Laboratory medicine and sports: Between Scylla and Charybdis

Giuseppe Lippi, Giuseppe Banfi, Francesco Botrè, Xavier De La Torre, Francesco De Vita, Mari Carmen Gomez-Cabrera, Nicola Maffulli, Lucio Marchioro, Roberta Pacifici, Fabian Sanchis-Gomar, Federico Schena, Mario Plebani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Laboratory medicine is complex and contributes to the diagnosis, therapeutic monitoring and follow-up of acquired and inherited human disorders. The regular practice of physical exercise provides important benefits in heath and disease and sports medicine is thereby receiving growing focus from almost each and every clinical discipline, including laboratory medicine. Sport-laboratory medicine is a relatively innovative branch of laboratory science, which can provide valuable contributions to the diagnosis and follow-up of athletic injuries, and which is acquiring a growing clinical significance to support biomechanics and identify novel genomics and "exercisenomics" patterns that can help identify specific athlete's tendency towards certain types of sport traumas and injuries. Laboratory medicine can also provide sport physicians and coaches with valuable clues about personal inclination towards a certain sport, health status, fitness and nutritional deficiencies of professional, elite and recreational athletes in order to enable a better and earlier prediction of sport injuries, overreaching and overtraining. Finally, the wide armamentarium of laboratory tests represents the milestone for identifying cheating athletes in the strenuous fight against doping in sports.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1309-1316
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2012


  • Antidoping
  • Doping
  • Exercise
  • Physical activity
  • Sports medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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