Nov 7, 2014

Article published in the online edition of EJHF



Article titled Vigorous physical activity impairs myocardial function in patients with arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy and in mutation positive family members has been published in the online edition of the renowed European Journal of Heart Failure on October 16th.

Authors; Jørg Saberniak, Nina E. Hasselberg, Rasmus Borgquist, Pyotr G Platonov, Sebastian I. Sarvari, Hans-Jørgen Smith, Margareth Ribe, Anders G. Holst, Thor Edvardsen and Kristina H. Haugaa

Picture: Cover Image Vol 16 Issue 11

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Exercise increases risk of ventricular arrhythmia in subjects with arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC). We aimed to investigate the impact of exercise on myocardial function in ARVC subjects.


We included 110 subjects (age 42 ± 17 years), 65 ARVC patients and 45 mutation-positive family members. Athletes were defined as subjects with ≥4 h vigorous exercise/week [≥1440 metabolic equivalents (METs × minutes/week)] during a minimum of 6 years. Athlete definition was fulfilled in 37/110 (34%) subjects. We assessed right ventricular (RV) and left ventricular (LV) myocardial function by echocardiography, and by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The RV function by RV fractional area change (FAC), RV global longitudinal strain (GLS) by echocardiography, and RV ejection fraction (EF) by MRI was reduced in athletes compared with non-athletes (FAC 34 ± 9% vs. 40 ± 11%, RVGLS -18.3 ± 6.1% vs. -22.0 ± 4.8%, RVEF 32 ± 8% vs. 43 ± 10%, all P < 0.01). LV function by LVEF and LVGLS was reduced in athletes compared with non-athletes (LVEF by echocardiography 50 ± 10% vs. 57 ± 5%, LVEF by MRI 46 ± 6% vs. 53 ± 8%, and LVGLS -16.7 ± 4.2% vs. -19.4 ± 2.9%, all P < 0.01). The METs × minutes/week correlated with reduced RV and LV function by echocardiography and MRI (all P < 0.01). The LVEF by MRI was also reduced in subgroups of athlete index patients (46 ± 7% vs. 54 ± 10%, P = 0.02) and in athlete family members (47 ± 3% vs. 52 ± 6%, P < 0.05).


Athletes showed reduced biventricular function compared with non-athletes in ARVC patients and in mutation-positive family members. The amount and intensity of exercise activity was associated with impaired LV and RV function. Exercise may aggravate and accelerate myocardial dysfunction in ARVC.

© 2014 The Authors. European Journal of Heart Failure published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of European Society of Cardiology.

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