Athletic Heart Syndrome Analysis

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Everyone knows regular, daily exercise is beneficial to the heart. It helps reduce the risk of heart disease, maintains a healthy body weight, lowers blood pressure, and improves cholesterol. A difference of appearance can be identified between the hearts of people who exercise routinely and those of highly trained athletes. Athletic hearts undergo cardiac remodeling of chambers and physiological changes as a result of extreme conditions placed on the heart over a long period of time. The heart adapts to these conditions by increasing in chamber size and wall thickness to eject more blood to the rest of the body. A term commonly used to describe these changes is Athletic Heart Syndrome. Athletic Heart Syndrome is not harmful if you're an athlete …show more content…
For the most part, athletes EKG's are normal or have slight electrical changes. The most commonly reported alterations are early depolarization patterns, increased QRS voltages, diffuse T-wave inversion, and deep Q waves. Sinus bradycardia, which is an abnormally slow heart rate below 60 bpm, is considered normal in athletes at rest and is mostly without symptoms. The heart has become so efficient, it delivers large volumes of blood with each beat, so fewer beats are needed. Another type of arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation, can actually be a problem in athletes. If the athlete is symptomatic, then treatments can be put in place. An example of treatment is prescribed detraining. If an athlete quits training, the heart is deconditioned and can return to normal. However, in most elite athletes, the heart will not return to normal which poses a serious …show more content…
It is most commonly confused with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). HCM is a disease of the heart where there's an abnormal wall thickness decreasing the size of the cavity and limiting the amount of blood it can hold and pump. It can occur with or without an obstruction. There are a couple ways of differentiating the two. LV cavity size in athletes is slightly bigger compare to HCM. Athletes have a normal or enhanced diastolic function, whereas HCM patients have abnormal filling of the LV. Family history of HCM is an important consideration, however it does not dismiss the possibility if no one in their family has it. Another way to tell the difference is a decrease in wall thickness and chamber size when an athlete stops training or deconditioning. With true HCM, this would not occur. This approach is number one way of distinguishing the two.

Sudden death in athletes is a major concern. Though it is a rare occurrence, it is devastating to families and the communities when it happens. The most common cause of sudden death is young athletes in the United States is hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Exercise or sports activities may trigger a dangerous arrhythmia called ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation, which can result in death. A family history and pre screening before sport participation can help reduce the chances of sudden death from

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