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Athlete’s Heart and Left Heart Disease

  • Cesare de GregorioEmail author
  • Dalia Di Nunzio
  • Gianluca Di Bella
Chapter
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1067)

Abstract

Physical activity comprises all muscular activities that require energy expenditure. Regular sequence of structured and organized exercise with the specific purpose of improving wellness and athletic performance is defined as a sports activity.

Exercise can be performed at various levels of intensity and duration. According to the social context and pathways, it can be recreational, occupational, and competitive. Therefore, the training burden varies inherently and the heart adaptation is challenging.

Although a general agreement on the fact that sports practice leads to metabolic, functional and physical benefits, there is evidence that some athletes may be subjected to adverse outcomes. Sudden cardiac death can occur in apparently healthy individuals with unrecognized cardiovascular disease.

Thus, panels of experts in sports medicine have promoted important pre-participation screening programmes aimed at determining sports eligibility and differentiating between physiological remodeling and cardiac disease.

In this review, the most important pathophysiological and diagnostic issues are discussed.

Keywords

Athlete’s heart Cardiomyopathy Exercise Functional evaluation Left ventricular hypertrophy Physical training Sports Sudden cardiac death 

Acronyms

AH

Athlete’s heart

CVD(s)

Cardiovascular disease(s)

ECG

Electrocardiogram

ECHO

Echocardiography

HCM

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

LA

Left atrial/atrium

LV

Left ventricle/ventricular

PHA

Physical activity

pVO2

Peak oxygen uptake

SA

Sports activity

SCD

Sudden cardiac death

Notes

Conflict of Interest

None to declare

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cesare de Gregorio
    • 1
    Email author
  • Dalia Di Nunzio
    • 1
  • Gianluca Di Bella
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine – Cardiology UnitUniversity Hospital Medical School “Gaetano Martino”MessinaItaly

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