Navigation Links
Marathoners Face Greater Risk of Artery Stiffness

And this could lead to high blood pressure, heart attack, even death, study suggests

SATURDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- If regular exercise such as jogging is good for the heart, then turbo-charged workouts like training for marathons must be even better, right?

Not so fast, according to new research by Greek doctors who found that marathon runners have increased stiffness of the large arteries, suggesting that some types of high-intensity exercise may actually be bad for the heart, potentially leading to hardening of the arteries, high blood pressure, heart attack and even death.

"Our data suggest that exercise may have an inverted U-shape relation with arterial stiffness. In other words, when you do not exercise you have higher risk of cardiovascular events, but the same also happens when you exercise too much," study lead investigator Dr. Despina Kardara, of Athens Medical School, Hippokration Hospital, said in a news release. "Regular long-term endurance training is generally beneficial for heart health, but it seems that the cardiovascular system is like a sports car engine. If you do not use it, it will decay, but if you run it too fast for too long, you might burn it out."

The findings were presented Saturday at the American College of Cardiology's annual scientific session, in Atlanta.

The study, which the researchers said was the first examine the long-term effect of intense, protracted endurance training on the elastic properties of the large arteries, found that male marathon runners (females were not included in the study) had significantly increased stiffness of the aorta -- the major artery leading from the heart -- when compared with people who took part in recreational exercise.

The researchers evaluated blood pressure and artery elasticity in 49 healthy men who regularly trained to run marathons and 46 control subjects who weren't endurance athletes. The marathoners had significantly higher systolic blood pressure (the top number in a reading) than the non-marathoners, about 11 points higher on average, when measured at the brachial artery in the upper arm. Their mean blood pressure was also about 8 points higher on average than the control subjects.

The researchers concluded that the study participants' exercise regimens were related to arterial stiffness, suggesting that more intense exercise may lead to increased stiffness of the large arteries.

"This is important because stiff arteries lead to high blood pressure and can impair the heart, keeping it from performing properly," Kardara said. "Overall, aortic stiffness is an indicator of cardiovascular disease and hardening of the arteries, and a predictor of heart attack and related death."

The researchers said there may be several explanations for the stiffer arteries found in marathoners. One is that extreme exercise may place repeated and excessive stress on the artery wall, leading to its fatigue, said Dr. Charalambos Vlachopoulos, also of Athens Medical School, Hippokration Hospital, and a co-investigator of the study.

"Endurance athletes should be cautious about the amount and volume of their training programs, trying not to wear themselves out, and always work in close collaboration with their physicians, especially before participating in an intense endeavor like marathon running, Kardara said.

More information

To learn more about exercise and heart health, visit the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

-- HealthDay staff

SOURCE: American College of Cardiology, news release, March 13, 2010

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Marathoners Share Tom Brady and LaDainian Tomlinson Pain Relief Affinity
2. Marathoners Go the Distance on Heart Health
3. Prevalence of COPD Greater Than Thought
4. DuPont Focused on Meeting Global Demands for Greater Safety & Protection
5. Greater Baltimore Medical Center Taps Beryl for Customer Call Center Services
6. Kensey Nash Reports Acceleration of Stock Awards Triggered by Shareholder Acquisition of Greater Than 20% of Outstanding Shares
7. New strategies with greater antitumorous efficacy
8. Malaria product portfolio would benefit from greater cohesion amongst stakeholders
9. Greater China Corporation Forms TongRenTang Wellness Corporation
10. United Way of Greater Los Angeles Kicks Off Initiative to Prevent and End Homelessness With HomeWalk 2007
11. SEIU Applauds Bipartisan Leadership of Sen. Finance Committee in Push for Greater Oversight of Private Equity Takeovers of Nursing Homes
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/27/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 27, ... ... in the patient payment industry today announced its strategic partnership with Connance, ... system workflows. , The two companies’ proven, proprietary technology combine to provide ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... On ... as sponsor of the 2016 Cereal Festival and World’s Longest Breakfast Table in Battle ... honor of the city’s history as home to some of the world’s leading providers ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... they have been diagnosed with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to ... a comprehensive approach that can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture animations, FCPX ... Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package transforms over ... Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it above media ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health ... of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health promotion. , The Wellness at Work Awards ... at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. iHire was one of 42 businesses to ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. , June 23, 2016 ... faced the many challenges of the current process. Many of ... option because of the technical difficulties and high laboratory costs ... would have to offer it at such a high cost ... to afford it. Dr. Parsa Zadeh , ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the ... to 2022" report to their offering. ... financial data derived from varied research sources to present unique ... on the market during the next five years, including a ... markets, regional and country level analysis. The report provides a ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 , , , ... 7, 2016 , , , , LOCATION: , , , ... , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , Frost & Sullivan,s ... Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and Unmesh Lal, Program ... global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an exceptional era. Several new demand ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: