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Date of Award

1990

Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Department

Physical Education

First Advisor

Edward Avakian

Second Advisor

Margaret Ciccolella

First Committee Member

Donald Barker

Second Committee Member

Thomas Stubbs

Abstract

Athletes have continually sought to improve their physical performance. In order to accomplish this, athletes experiment with performance enhancing drugs, which are readily available to the athlete today. Cocaine, being one of them, is traditionally and popularly believed to increase muscular endurance and possess anti-fatiguing properties. The scientific literature as to whether cocaine is truly a performance enhancing drug is inconclusive. Moreover, few if any studies have been conducted on exercise performance following long term, repeated cocaine administration. The purpose of the present study was to determine the effects of 35 days of cocaine administration (25 mg/kg/day) on maximal endurance exercise capacity. Data were collected from six untrained male Sprague-Dawley rats. Resting and exercise heart rate and body temperature were recorded via radio telemetery. Running time to exhaustion was recorded via one weekly maximal treadmill exercise bout to exhaustion (26 m/min, at a 10% grade). Compared to saline controls, cocaine significantly decreased run time to exhaustion, following acute and chronic administration. Cocaine administration also significantly decreased maximal exercise heart rate. Chronic cocaine had minimal effects on resting heart rate and resting and exercise body temperature during maximal exercise conditions. These data indicate that daily, chronic cocaine administration significantly reduces endurance exercise capacity, and suggests that the decreased physical work capacity following cocaine is related to a decreased ability of the heart to function under maximal exercise conditions.

Pages

84

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