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Atrial fibrillation and endurance sport practice

Old 07-30-14, 08:00 PM
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Atrial fibrillation and endurance sport practice

"Patients with a history of endurance sports before ablation (n = 31) developed significantly more atrial fibrillation than controls or those with a history of other type of sports activity after flutter ablation"

Endurance sport practice as a risk factor for atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter
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Old 02-23-15, 09:53 PM
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AF is still not well understood even by cardiologists. I can remember episodes of AF as far back as 1969 when I was 22 though I didn't know what it was at the time. Surprisingly vigorous exercise almost never triggers it my case. It takes a combination of factors which includes but is not limited to stress and esophageal stimulation (burp that starts very low and takes longer than normal), the esophagus is very close to the atrium and likely expands into it. I'm not too impressed with all the hype about stroke either that pushes dangerous blood thinners. I take a low dose aspirin twice a day. I also take Amlodipine to control blood pressure. It seems to slow my pulse a little and works well to counteract Raynauds in cold weather.
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Old 02-24-15, 01:40 PM
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AF is fun for me (at age <32).

mine is sporadic fortunately, and i'm not even sure wtf triggers it to be honest. i've only had a couple of episodes while riding, and lets just say I keep my blood pressure up to prevent spontaneous passing out when it does happen.
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Old 02-25-15, 01:58 PM
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runs in the family for me, and got much worse when I went over the top cycling. (read trained at the expense of sleep) Triggers for me, #1 lack of sleep, 2, stress and 3 high sugar. Have been reading of a correlation of LOW TESTOSTERONE with afib. Hmmm , endurance sports will tend to hammer the hormones , and a fib hits at the time men's testosterone starts to drop... Also endurance will induce mineral imbalance(calc, magnesium) Lots of mineral loss with endurance. (thus the loss of bone density) low Testo causes, you guessed it , calcium loss from heart muscle....Going for a testosterone test and if low will try natural testo remedies, and sufficient sleep. Afib has nearly done me in as every time I start up training a fibs puts me out for a few days.
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Old 04-12-15, 07:22 PM
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I have SVT, which is the ventricular version of afib. Lack of sleep, stress, and dehydration are triggers. I do not think that caffeine is a trigger fwiw. Episodes are almost always correlated with very hard physical efforts, specifically with not cooling down properly after a max effort, and seem to come in clusters -- nothing for a year, then episodes every week for a month, then nothing for a year. My dad has it too, worse, he has required ER cardioversion (defibrillation) several times.

In between races today I had an SVT episode, first one I've ever had in a race context. The first race ended with a 3 minute very hard effort, then I had to get right to the line to start the next race. SVT kicked in and my HR doubled. I told my buddy "crap, my heart just broke" and went to lie down in the grass. I took my jersey off and lay on my back next to the staging racers, changing my race numbers and trying to be still enough for the episode to break. I'm sure it looked totally weird. After about a minute the episode broke so I got up and lined up for the next race, which went fine.

One interesting thing my cardiologist told me a while ago is that SVT and afib can get worse with age, but it can also get better. Like Ray9 said, it's not well understood.
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Old 06-12-15, 03:42 PM
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Stale thread, but what the hell. Hi all.

Ventricular fibrillation, not SVT, is the ventricular equivalent of A-fib, causes clinical cardiac arrest, and is essentially incompatible with life. That's what defibrillators are for.

SVT (supraventricular tachycardia) occurs when aberrant pacing signals are generated from a single location north of the ventricles, but south of the atria (hence the name) and cause the ventricular rate to spike. It is as others have described above. It's pretty common in adult athletes of all ages and not a major issue unless the runs are fast and long enough to cause problems like globecanvas's.

AF is a different beast, definitely a disease of the elderly (>60) athlete. Episodes tend to last longer (or forever) and it's a more serious thing because of the stroke risk. However, it is often a less dramatic experience for the patient than SVT. For people under 75 without diabetes, heart failure, previous stroke or high blood pressure, the stroke risk is still low. There are many treatment options.
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Old 06-13-15, 10:40 AM
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Thanks for the input...and welcome.
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Old 06-14-15, 09:19 PM
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Yes, thank you @MoAlpha. For a while I followed this forum dedicated to heart rhythm issues, trying to decide whether ablation was worth considering. There are some strong ablation supporters there, but in the end I decided the episodes were at worst highly annoying, rather than quality of life threatening, so not worth an invasive procedure to try to correct.
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Old 01-08-16, 11:07 AM
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Rehashing an old thread, but I thought I would share some experiences after two decades of Afib. My Afib/Flutter experience started back when I was 30. It was vagally mediated, which meant it happened mostly at night and post exercise. It also meant that after a couple of years and several cardiologists, I finally self-diagnosed (with the help of internet forums) that it was vagal and a correct treatment path was selected by a cardiologist who was happy to have what was then thought to be rare case. Stress (extra body weight and near constant motion) & caffeine were the best tools were the best at keeping it at bay. Root beer, oddly enough, was an automatic trigger. Despite understanding most of the triggers, the condition worsened to multiple episodes per day which led to several anti-arrhythmics up to and including combinations of anti-arrhythmics. So after eight years, I had my first ablation. The positive results lasted about a year and then the Afib episodes returns and the drugs were restarted. During this phase Atrial Flutter reared it's ugly head and a second more evasive ablation was needed a year later. After what my surgeon described what he did, I now picture the inside of my heart looking like it has custom racing strips drawn into it's wall. This second ablation was about a decade ago. Fast forward to today, I still get a short-lived Afib episodes maybe once a month, sometimes between track races, but I'm always back in Sinus rhythm before the next event. That's a good thing.
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