Allergy and asthma diagnosis for Astana’s Kessiakoff
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Friday, April 20, 2012

Allergy and asthma diagnosis for Astana’s Kessiakoff

by VeloNation Press at 4:32 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Injury
Swedish rider believes he’s found reason for lack of form

Fredrik KessiakoffAstana’s Fredrik Kessiakoff has revealed the likely reason for his drop in form of recent weeks, saying that tests have shown that his body has been under attack.

“Before going to Tenerife I did a blood test to make sure all my blood levels were good. I also did an allergy test, just to be able to exclude that this could be something which was causing my lack of energy these last few weeks,” he wrote on his blog.

“During my stay in Tenerife my test results came back. Blood levels were good, but the allergy test came back positive, meaning there was an allergic reaction going on in my body. After a quick consultation with my team I decided to leave Tenerife early and head to Milan for further tests.”

On Wednesday he learned from the medical specialists that they believe he has asthma and also some kind of allergy.

The diagnosis is a welcome one, in some ways, as it gives him an explanation for what has hampered him recently, and a pathway to try to sort it out.

“What I'm allergic to is yet unknown, but the important thing now is to start treating it right away. In one way I am happy to find out why I have been performing so poorly even when training and doing everything right. But on the other hand I am frustrated that I have found this out only now, causing so much frustration the last few weeks.”

The 2006 world mountain bike championship bronze medallist had started the season in a promising way, finishing seventh on a stage and ninth overall in the Tour du Haut Var.

However after that things took a step backwards, with the Astana rider finishing back in 56th place in Tirreno Adriatico and 59th in the Settimana Coppi e Bartali. He’s hoping to get back up to speed soon, but is as yet unsure as to his programme.

“I will now give it the weekend to see how I feel and then take a decision on coming races,” he said.

Allergies and asthma make things considerably more difficult for riders, with Kessiakoff’s former team-mate Dan Martin being a case in point. In previous seasons the Garmin Barracuda climber has suffered from allergies during the spring, hampering his ability to race.

He told VeloNation last year that it causes his body to accumulate fluid, sometimes increasing his weight by several kilos, and prevents him from being able to reach the heart rates he’d normally expect.

Martin has however received help with the condition and has now fine-tuned the use of permitted inhalers which enable him to cope with the allergies. He’s said that he’s feeling stronger as a result this spring, and picked up sixth place in Wednesday’s Flèche Wallonne.

Kessiakoff will hope that he is able to get over the issue now and be able to race again at a high level.


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