Should Blood Doping Be Legal?

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Blood doping creates unneeded risk and endangers an athlete’s life for a slightly increased chance of winning a competition. This practice should remain banned and athletes should seek alternative practices that do not come with unusual added health risks. Though there are logical arguments for each side, there is more evidence to support the argument that blood doping should not be legal in athletic competitions. There is too much risk involved for the reward to be so miniscule. Blood transfusions became popular between the 1970s and 1980s with a diverse population of professional athletes. EPOs (a natural hormone made by the kidney’s) followed blood transfusions and gained their popularity in the late 1980s (Eichner). The effects of EPOs were seen through the many health risks that the athletes encountered including the death of 20 European cyclists over a period of 4 years (Eichner). The 1998 Tour de France also saw its fair share of EPO use among athletes with one team being disqualified and 6 more teams dropping out (Eichner). Later came the use of synthetic or artificial blood. In recent years athletes have been accused of, and caught, using all of these methods to increase their endurance and performance. Tests are improving to be able to detect when an athlete has used one of these methods. Blood doping is a very controversial issue among the athletic community and continues to grow. The reasons why the use of blood doping has become so much more common include
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