Platelet indices in athletes performing a race in altitude environment

G. Banfi, M. Marinelli, G. S. Rol, M. Giacometti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Physical activity could modify platelet count and platelet indices. Previous reports showed modifications after exercise linked to type and duration of sports performances. The shortage of studies in this field stems from the crucial methodological problem of EDTA (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid)-dependent, mean platelet volume modifications: the published data on platelets count and indices were obtained by using a light-scattering system without standardization of the period elapsed from drawing to measurement. We present a study of platelet indices performed in athletes participating in an 'extreme' performance, a race of 30 km in altitude (6,700 m of ascents and descents), using standardized measurement by an aperture-impedance instrument transferred in the field. The platelet count and mean platelet volume significantly increased in athletes, whereas platelet distribution width decreased. The mean initial values were 240.6*109/L for platelet count, 8.79 fL for mean platelet volume, and 15.79% for platelet distribution width. The correspondent mean final values were 288.4*109/L, 9.14 fL, and 15.48%. The modifications of platelet count and indices were always in the physiological reference range. The entity and the rapidity of platelet count and indices modifications suggest that the more probable source of variation is the recruitment of noncirculating pools of mature platelets. Strenuous exercise does not show abnormal changes of platelet parameters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-36
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Clinical Laboratory Analysis
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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