Heart transplant recipients can improve fitness and perform high intensity workouts

Jul 06, 2009

Heart transplant recipients' cardio-respiratory fitness is around 30 to 50 per cent lower than age-matched healthy sedentary individuals. As a result, exercise rehabilitation should be very important to these patients, and a University of Alberta study shows they can improve their overall physical fitness.

Mark Haykowsky, in the Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine, led the largest randomized exercise intervention trial in heart-transplant patients, which was published in the April edition of American Journal of Transplantation. The study involved 43 participants, half sedentary, and the other half on a 12-week exercise program. He found that exercise improved cardio-respiratory , muscle mass and maximal strength; surprisingly, however, exercise training didn't improve heart or blood-vessel function. Those exercising improved the size of the muscle mass, but blood vessels were still hardened and the heart's ability to fill and relax was not improved.

The study's findings show that people who are classified as "long-term post-transplant" are trainable. The results also served as a springboard for Dwight Kroening, who went on to become the first heart-transplant recipient to complete an Ironman triathlon (2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike and 26 mile run). And the inspiration goes both ways, as Haykowsky went on to train and complete his first because of Kroening's own determination.

Source: University of Alberta (news : web)

Explore further: Continued reliance on Windows XP in physician practices may threaten data security

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Brief, intense exercise benefits the heart

Jun 04, 2008

Short bursts of high intensity sprints -- known to benefit muscle and improve exercise performance—can improve the function and structure of blood vessels, in particular arteries that deliver blood to our muscles and heart, ...

'Runner's high' may also strengthen hearts

Nov 08, 2007

Endorphins and other morphine-like substances known as opioids, which are released during exercise, don't just make you feel good -- they may also protect you from heart attacks, according to University of Iowa researchers.

'Directed thinking' increases time spent exercising

Jun 24, 2008

"Directed Thinking" involves asking people to think about information related to a topic that they already know which directs them to action. A study in the Journal of Applied Biobehavioral Research shows how "directed thinking" ...

Recommended for you

Obese British man in court fight for surgery

Jul 11, 2011

A British man weighing 22 stone (139 kilograms, 306 pounds) launched a court appeal Monday against a decision to refuse him state-funded obesity surgery because he is not fat enough.

2008 crisis spurred rise in suicides in Europe

Jul 08, 2011

The financial crisis that began to hit Europe in mid-2008 reversed a steady, years-long fall in suicides among people of working age, according to a letter published on Friday by The Lancet.

New food labels dished up to keep Europe healthy

Jul 06, 2011

A groundbreaking deal on compulsory new food labels Wednesday is set to give Europeans clear information on the nutritional and energy content of products, as well as country of origin.

Overweight men have poorer sperm count

Jul 04, 2011

Overweight or obese men, like their female counterparts, have a lower chance of becoming a parent, according to a comparison of sperm quality presented at a European fertility meeting Monday.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Down's chromosome cause genome-wide disruption

The extra copy of Chromosome 21 that causes Down's syndrome throws a spanner into the workings of all the other chromosomes as well, said a study published Wednesday that surprised its authors.

Progress in the fight against quantum dissipation

(Phys.org) —Scientists at Yale have confirmed a 50-year-old, previously untested theoretical prediction in physics and improved the energy storage time of a quantum switch by several orders of magnitude. ...

Meteorites yield clues to Martian early atmosphere

(Phys.org) —Geologists who analyzed 40 meteorites that fell to Earth from Mars unlocked secrets of the Martian atmosphere hidden in the chemical signatures of these ancient rocks. Their study, published ...