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The Spectrum of Change in the Elite Athlete’s Heart

Overview The authors of this prospective observational study had focused on echocardiographic changes among elite athletes during the period of 6 years. They described the changes of echocardiographic parameters – a proportional increase of the end-systolic volume (ESV) and mass of the left ventricle (LVM) as well as decrease of ejection fraction (EF). The end-diastolic volume (EDV) increased only in athletes increasing also their exercise performance (eccentric remodelling). The global longitudinal left ventricular strain (GLS LV) tended to get better. The diastolic function got better during the adaptation to the exercise. The right ventricle dimensions increased along with unchanged fractional area change (FAC), and the dimension of the RV increased not proportionally more than the LV ones. In older athletes, the RV adaptation was even more maladaptive.


Authors Rebecca Perry et al.


Journal J Am Soc Echocardiogr 2019;32:978-86
Recommendation/Comment The article describes the normal physiological adaptation of the heart to the long term physical exercise.
Clinical implication This data will help in the differentiation of normal from a pathological adaptation of the heart to the exercise.
Link (DOI)
Ultrasound speciality Echocardiography