Wearable Device Study Confirms Moderate-to-Vigorous Physical Activity Linked To Decreased Mortality

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

I-Min Lee, MD, ScD Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Professor of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Brigham and Women's Hospital Boston, MA 02215

Dr. Lee

I-Min Lee, MD, ScD
Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Professor of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Boston, MA 02215

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: The fact that physical activity lowers the risk of premature mortality is not a new fact – we have many studies showing this.  However, previous studies have primarily relied on self-reported physical activity, and self-reports tend to be imprecise.  Based on these self-report studies, we know that physical activity is associated with a 20-30% reduction in mortality rates.  And, these self-report studies also have focused on moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity, since they are more reliably reported than lighter intensity activity.  We have little information on whether light-intensity activities (e.g., light household chores, very slow walking such as when strolling and window shopping) are associated with lower mortality rates.

We now have “wearables” – devices that can more precisely measure physical activity at low (as well as higher) intensities, and sedentary behavior.  The present study, conducted between 2011 and 2015, investigated a large cohort of older women (n=16,741; mean age, 72 years)  who were asked to wear these devices for a week – thus, providing detailed physical activity and sedentary behavior measures.  During an average follow-up of about two-and-a-half years, 207 women died.  The study confirmed that physical activity is related to lower mortality rates.

What is new and important is how strong this association is when we have more precise measures of physical activity – the most active women had a 60-70% reduction in mortality rates, compared with the least active, during the study.  For context, non-smokers have about a 50% risk reduction, compared to smokers, which is why patients (and doctors) should pay attention to being physically active.

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Focusing on Physical Activity Can Help Avoid Unnecessary Later Life Social Care Expenses

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Scarlett McNally

Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeo
Eastbourne D.G.H.

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: There are vast differences between older people in their abilities and their number of medical conditions. Many people confuse ageing with loss of fitness. Ageing has specific effects (reduction in hearing and skin elasticity for example) but the loss of fitness is not inevitable. Genetics contributes only 20% to diseases. There is abundant evidence that adults who take up physical activity improve their fitness up to the level of someone a decade younger, with improvements in ‘up and go’ times. Physical activity can reduce the severity of most conditions, such as heart disease or the risk of onset or recurrence of many cancers. Inactivity is one of the top four risk factors for most long-term conditions. There is a dose-effect curve. Dementia, disability and frailty can be prevented, reduced or delayed.

The need for social care is based on an individual’s abilities; for example, being unable to get to the toilet in time may increase the need for care from twice daily care givers to needing residential care or live-in care, which increases costs five-fold.

Hospitals contribute to people reducing their mobility, with the ‘deconditioning syndrome’ of bed rest, with 60% of in-patients reducing their mobility.

The total cost of social care in the UK is up to £100 billion, so even modest changes would reduce the cost of social care by several billion pounds a year.

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Very High Exercise Levels Linked To Increase in Coronary Artery Calcification

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Deepika Laddu PhD Assistant Professor Department of Physical Therapy College of Applied Health Sciences The University of Illinois at Chicago Chicago, IL 60612

Dr. Laddu

Deepika Laddu PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Physical Therapy
College of Applied Health Sciences
The University of Illinois at Chicago
Chicago, IL 60612 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: Recent findings in population-based cohort studies on cumulative exercise dose have caused some controversy and debate showing U-shaped trends of association between physical activity and disease risk. Our objective was to better understand this association between physical activity and cardiovascular disease risk from young adulthood to middle age.

Given that engagement in physical activity is a continuously evolving behavior throughout life, this study looked at the physical activity trajectories of 3,175 black and white participants in the multicenter, community-based, longitudinal cohort CARDIA study who reported physical activity patterns over 25 years (from 1985 through 2011), and assessed the presence of coronary artery calcification, or CAC, among participants. Unique to this study is the evaluation of long-term exercise patterns from young adulthood into middle age in CARDIA participants. Based on the trajectories (or patterns of change) of physical activity over 25 years, participants were categorized into three distinct trajectory groups: trajectory group one was defined as exercising below the national guidelines (less than 150 minutes a week), group two as meeting the national guidelines for exercise (150 minutes a week), and group three as exercising three-times the national guidelines (more than 450 minutes a week).

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Yoga May Reduce Disability and Opioid Use In Veterans With Chronic Low Back Pain

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Erik Groessl PhD Associate Adjunct Professor Family Medicine and Public Health University of California, San Diego

Dr. Groessl

Erik Groessl PhD
Associate Adjunct Professor
Family Medicine and Public Health
University of California, San Diego

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Chronic low back pain (cLBP) is prevalent among military veterans, but cLBP treatment options have limited benefits and side effects. This has resulted in efforts to reduce opioid use and embrace nonpharmacological pain treatments.

Yoga has been shown to improve health outcomes and have few side effects in non-veteran community samples.

Our objective was to study the effectiveness and safety of yoga for military veterans with chronic low back pain.  In a study of 150 veterans with cLBP, we found that yoga participants had greater reductions in disability and pain than those receiving usual. Opioid medication use declined among all participants, and no serious side effects occurred.

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Is RICE Best After Injury? Study Suggests Rest Prolongs Recovery

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Monika Bayer PhD. Institute of Sports Medicine Copenhagen Bispebjerg Hospital Denmark

Dr. Bayer

Monika Bayer PhD.
Institute of Sports Medicine Copenhagen
Bispebjerg Hospital
Denmark

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Acute muscle strain injuries display a major clinical problem with a high incidence rate for both professional and amateur athletes and are associated with substantial risk for recurrence. Common clinical practice advices to follow the RICE (Rest – Ice – Compression – Elevation) principle after strain injuries but it has not been investigated whether patients really benefit from a period of rest or whether an early of loading following the injury would improve recovery.

In this study, amateur athletes were divided into two groups: one group started rehabilitation two days after the trauma, the other group waited for one week and began rehabilitation after nine days. All athletes had a clear structural defect of the muscle-connective tissue unit following explosive movements. We found that protraction of rehabilitation onset caused a three-week delay in pain-free recovery. In all athletes included, only one suffered from a re-injury.

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Playing Sports In Midlife Increases Chance of An Active Old Age

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr. Daniel Aggio, PhD UCL Department of Primary Care and Population Health UCL Medical School University College London PA Research Group London, UK

Dr. Aggio

Dr. Daniel Aggio, PhD
UCL Department of Primary Care and Population Health
UCL Medical School
University College London PA Research Group
London, UK

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Maintaining a physically active lifestyle into old age is associated with optimal health benefits. While we know that levels of physical activity in youth predict physical activity levels in adulthood, how physical activity in midlife predicts physical activity in old age is not as well understood. It is also unclear how different types of physical activity predict physical activity in later life.

Using data from the British Regional Heart Study, an ongoing prospective cohort study involving men recruited between 1978 and 1980, we assessed how physical activity tracks over 20 years from midlife to old age. The study of over 3400 men showed that being active in midlife more than doubled the odds of being active 20 years later. Interestingly, sport participation in midlife predicted physical activity in old age more strongly than other types of physical activity, such as walking and recreational activity. The odds of being active in old age were even stronger for those men who took up sport from a younger age prior to midlife.

Sport was the most stable activity across the follow up, with just under half of men reporting playing sport at least occasionally at each survey. However, walking was the least stable; the proportion of men who reported high levels of walking rose from just under 27% at the start of the study to 62% at the 20 year survey, possibly because retirement might free up more time.

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Most Deaths During Triathlons Occur During The Swim

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Kevin M. Harris, MD Director, Fellowship Training; Director, Echocardiography Allina Health, Minnesota

Dr. Harris

Kevin M. Harris, MD
Director, Fellowship Training; Director, Echocardiography
Allina Health, Minnesota

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Triathlon is a popular endurance sport which combines swimming, bicycling and running. We investigated the death rate in the triathlon since its inception in the United States in 1985 through 2016. Specifically we were able to look at the rate of death in USAT races from 2006 to 2016.

We identified 135 deaths/cardiac arrests over the time period. 85% of victims were male and victims averaged 47 years. Most deaths and cardiac arrests occurred in the swim. 15 of the deaths were traumatic occurring during the bike portion. The rate of death was 1.74 per 100,000 participants. The death rate was significantly higher for males than females and increased significantly for men > 40 years. On autopsy, nearly half of those victims were found to have significant cardiovascular disease.

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Inactivity Plus Frailty Predict Mortality

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Olga Theou, MSc PhD Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Dalhousie University Affiliated Scientist, Geriatric Medicine, Nova Scotia Health Authority Adjunct Senior Lecturer, School of Medicine, University of Adelaide Halifax, Nova Scotia

Dr. Theou

Olga Theou, MSc PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Dalhousie University
Affiliated Scientist, Geriatric Medicine, Nova Scotia Health Authority
Adjunct Senior Lecturer, School of Medicine, University of Adelaide
Halifax, Nova Scotia 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: We already know that moderate to vigorous intensity physical activity, such as time accumulated during exercise, is associated with numerous health benefits. More recent studies also have shown that sedentary time, such as time accumulated during prolonged sitting at work, transportation, and leisure, can also increase the risk of adverse outcomes. What was not known was whether prolonged sitting affects people across different levels of frailty similarly. This is what we examined in our study.

We found that there were differences. Low frailty levels (people who are extremely healthy; frailty index score < 0.1) seemed to eliminate the increased risk of mortality associated with prolonged sitting, even among people who did not meet recommended physical activity guidelines. Among people with higher frailty levels, sedentary time was associated with mortality but only among those who did not meet recommended physical activity guidelines

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Group-Based Exercise Program Improves Mobility in Geriatric Population

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Jennifer Brach, Ph.D., P.T. Associate professor, Department of physical therapy School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences University of Pittsburgh

Dr. Brach

Jennifer Brach, Ph.D., P.T.
Associate professor, Department of physical therapy
School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
University of Pittsburgh

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: This study compared two different group exercise programs to improve mobility in community-dwelling older adults. The first program, a seated program focused on strength, endurance and flexibility, was based on usual care. The second program, called On the Move, was conducted primarily in standing position and focused on the timing and coordination of movements important for walking. Both programs met two times per week for 12 weeks. It was found that the On the Move program was more effective at improving mobility than the usual seated program.

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Pokémon Go! Promotes Walking and Decreases Sitting Time

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Jacob Barkley, Ph.D., College of Education, Health and Human Services Kent State

Dr. Barkley

Jacob Barkley, Ph.D.,
College of Education, Health and Human Services
Kent State 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: Our group has demonstrated that cellular telephone (cell phone) use is positively associated with sedentary behavior (i.e., sitting). To that end, high cell phone users sit for 80 to 100 minutes longer than their lower-use peers. We have also shown that cell phone use during exercise decreases exercise intensity and slows free-living walking speed. In other words, cell use may be comparable to traditional sedentary screen use in that it promotes sitting and may interfere with physical activity. However, some cell phone functions may actually promote positive health behaviors.

Fitness apps, connecting with active peers and administering health recommendations via the cell phone all may have utility in promoting physical activity and reducing sedentary behavior. While not well studied, novel physically-interactive cell phone games may also promote physical activity. One such game, Pokémon Go! requires users to walk through real environments and locate avatars in the game using GPS. The purpose of the game is to find these avatars. In order to find more avatars, the player will need to walk to more areas. Therefore, playing Pokémon Go! may promote walking.

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More Adults Walking For Transportation or Leisure, But Demographic Deparities Remain

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Emily Neusel Ussery, MPH PhD Epidemiologist, Physical Activity and Health Branch CDC

Dr. Ussery

Emily Neusel Ussery, MPH PhD
Epidemiologist, Physical Activity and Health Branch
CDC

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Walking is an easy way for most people to start and maintain a physically active lifestyle. Step It Up! The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Promote Walking and Walkable Communities identifies walking as an important public health strategy to increase physical activity levels in the U.S. A previous report found that the percentage of adults who reported walking for transportation or leisure increased by 6 percentage points between 2005 and 2010, but it is unknown if this increase has continued. This report examined trends in the proportion of U.S. adults who reported walking for transportation or leisure for at least one 10-minute period in the past week, using nationally representative data from the 2005, 2010, and 2015 National Health Interview Surveys. We also examined differences in walking trends by sociodemographic characteristics.

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Electroacupuncture Reduced Leakage in Stress Urinary Incontinence

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Baoyan Liu, MD
Guang’an Men Hospital
China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences
Beijing, China

Patient with Electroacupuncture

Patient with Electroacupuncture

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: The prevalence of stress urinary incontinence(SUI) is as high as 49% and varies according to the population studied and the definition of stress urinary incontinence.

SUI causes psychological burden, affects relationships, lowers physical productivity, and decreases quality of life in women. Yet, few effective therapies are available for treating stress urinary incontinence.

In this randomized clinical trial that included 504 women, the mean decrease in urine leakage, measured by the 1-hour pad test from baseline to week 6, was 9.9 g with
electroacupuncture vs 2.6 g with sham electroacupuncture, a significant difference.

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Yoga As Effective As Physical Therapy For Chronic Low Back Pain

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Robert B. Saper, MD, MPH Department of Family Medicine Boston Medical Center Boston, MA

Dr. Saper

Robert B. Saper, MD, MPH
Department of Family Medicine
Boston Medical Center
Boston, MA

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: There are a number of studies that show that yoga is effective for chronic low back pain (cLBP), but those studies included mostly white and middle-class individuals as research participants. cLBP disproportionately impacts those who are economically disadvantaged and minorities; they receive less referrals to specialists, less referrals to rehabilitation, and also less patient-education. Therefore, it was important to test whether yoga would be well- received by an underserved population, as well as be an effective form of treating chronic low back pain.

This study consisted of patients from diverse racial and economic backgrounds with multiple medical problems who were able to successfully participate and benefit from both yoga and physical therapy. This study used yoga classes that were specifically designed for people suffering from  chronic low back pain and compared the results of that treatment to those who did physical therapy.

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?

Response: The results show that the yoga was as effective as physical therapy for reducing pain intensity and improving people’s physical function. Patients in the study who did yoga reported that their overall pain intensity went down, that they were able to be more physically active, and a number of patients were also able to reduce or even stop all of their pain medication. The study shows that when yoga is made available and affordable to a diverse population, people of both sexes, people who are disabled, and people of different races and economic backgrounds are both receptive to yoga and, more importantly, can benefit from it.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Doctors should know that a structured yoga program for cLBP is a reasonable, effective, and safe approach for patients with chronic  chronic low back pain. Patients with cLBP should talk with their doctors about different options for treatment of back pain, starting with non-drug approaches like yoga and physical therapy. Policy makers need to examine the potential benefits for patients and cost savings for covering non-pharmacological approaches to pain.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: The cost effectiveness of yoga and physical therapy for chronic low back pain still needs to be looked at carefully, as well as how the medical community can implement yoga classes for back pain widely.

While medication, imaging and invasive procedures absolutely have their place, research and clinical guidelines show that non-pharmacological procedures as first treatment options may be best.

MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: Yoga is increasingly popular in the United States, and many yoga teachers are available in urban areas. However, yoga teachers and yoga classes are still relatively rare in communities of color and disadvantaged areas. Therefore, it’s important that we begin to train, build, and make yoga more available to diverse communities. Changing the common view of yoga from a fitness exercise for the healthy and wealthy, to a therapeutic approach for people with chronic pain and other conditions, is also an ongoing challenge.

Finding that yoga is non-inferior to physical therapy makes a strong case that yoga programs like the one in this study should be covered by insurance and offered by health care facilities. When a therapy like yoga is shown to be as effective as standard therapies, it should be made available to everyone regardless of ability to pay. For patients who attended more classes or physical therapy sessions, their cLBP improvement was even greater.

MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.

Citation:

Saper RB, Lemaster C, Delitto A, Sherman KJ, Herman PM, Sadikova E, et al. Yoga, Physical Therapy, or Education for Chronic Low Back Pain: A Randomized Noninferiority Trial. Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 20 June 2017] doi: 10.7326/M16-2579

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

 

 

 

Healthy Diet and Exercise Reduce Colon Cancer Recurrence

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Erin Van Blarigan, ScD
Assistant Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics
UC San Francisco

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: There are over 1.3 million colorectal cancer survivors in the United States. Cancer survivors often seek guidance on what they can do to lower their risk of cancer recurrence and death. In response to patient interest and the need for improved survivorship care, the American Cancer Society (ACS) published guidelines on nutrition and physical activity for cancer survivors.

The guidelines are to:
1) achieve and maintain a healthy body weight;
2) engage in regular physical activity; and
3) achieve a dietary pattern that is high in vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.

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Young Athletes Who Specialize In Single Sport May Raise Risk of Overuse Injury

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Jacqueline Pasulka, OMS II
Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine , Des Moines , IA
Division of Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery & Sports Medicine, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago , Chicago , IL

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: In this study young athletes were recruited from both sports medicine and general practice clinics and were asked to complete surveys reporting on their sports participation, training patterns, and any sports-related injuries they had over the previous six months. We focused this study on the subset of athletes who met the criteria for being a single-sport specialized athlete based on their reported participation in only one sport and training for eight months or more during the year for that sport. Athletes participating in individual sports were more likely to be single-sport specialized than their team sport peers, and they also reported an earlier age at which they began specializing in their sport. Additionally, injury types differed among these two groups as single-sport specialized athletes in individual sport athletes had a greater proportion of overuse injuries, while single-sport specialized athletes in team sport athletes had a greater proportion of acute injuries.

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Aerobic or Resistance Exercise, or Both, in Dieting Obese Older Adults?

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dennis T. Villareal, MD Professor of Medicine Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism Baylor College of Medicine Staff Physician, Michael E DeBakey VA Medical Center

Dr. Villareal

Dennis T. Villareal, MD
Professor of Medicine
Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism
Baylor College of Medicine
Staff Physician, Michael E DeBakey VA Medical Center

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: The prevalence of obesity in the elderly is rapidly increasing, given that the baby boomers are becoming senior citizens, but we do not know how best to manage obesity in the elderly population. Weight loss is the cornerstone of management for obesity but weight loss in the elderly is controversial because weight loss could cause not only fat loss but also muscle mass and bone mass losses, that could worsen rather than improve frailty.

We tested the hypothesis that weight loss plus exercise training, especially resistance training, would improve physical function the most compared to other types of exercise (aerobic training or combined aerobic and resistance training added to diet-induced weight loss).

Previous studies especially in younger adults have shown that combining aerobic with resistance exercise could lead to interference to the specific adaptations to each exercise, and thus less gain in strength with combined exercise compared to resistance training alone.

On the other hand, contrary to our hypothesis, we found that there was no interference between aerobic and resistance exercise, and the most effective mode to improve physical function and thus reverse frailty was in fact weight loss plus the combination of aerobic and resistance exercise, which was also associated with some preservation of muscle and bone mass.

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Over 50? Exercise Linked To Improved Cognitive Function

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Joseph Michael Northey
UC Research Institute for Sport and Exercise (UCRISE),
Discipline of Sport and Exercise Science, Faculty of Health
University of Canberra, Canberra, Australia

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Physical exercise has an important role to play in maintaining cognitive function across the lifecycle. However, the benefits of implementing a physical exercise intervention were not clear. To address these issues which prevented evidence-based prescription of exercise for cognitive function, a systematic review of all the available literature up to November of 2016 in adults older than 50 was conducted.

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Athletes’ Microbiome May Be Conditioned For Performance

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Orla O’Sullivan

Computational Biologist,
Teagasc Food Research Centre,
Moorepark, Co. Cork,
Ireland 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Previously we had demonstrated that professional rugby players had significantly increased microbial diversity compared to both low and high BMI controls. This microbial diversity correlated with creatine kinase levels in the blood (which we had used as a proxy for exercise) and protein intake. In this present study we went a step further and demonstrated that these same athletes had distinct functional potential in their gut microbes compared to controls and furthermore both the host derived ( urine) and bacterial derived ( faecal water) metabolites were also distinct in the athlete group. In particular we found that the athlete’s microbiome is primed for tissue repair and to harness energy from the diet, reflecting the significant energy demands and high cell-turnover evident in elite sport.

Thus, the state of physical fitness is not limited to the host alone; it appears to also include conditioning of the microbiota.

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Regular, Long-term Resistance Training or Jump-Training Increases Bone Mass

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Pamela S. Hinton, Ph.D. Associate Professor & Director of Graduate Studies Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology Columbia MO 65211

Dr. Hinton

Pamela S. Hinton, Ph.D.
Associate Professor & Director of Graduate Studies
Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology
Columbia MO 65211

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: This study builds on our previous work showing that weight-bearing, high-impact physical activity throughout the lifespan is associated with greater bone mass in men.  We previously conducted a 12-month randomized trial of the effectiveness of resistance training versus jump training to increase bone mass in men with low bone density of the hip or lumbar spine.

The current study is a follow up study investigating how exercise might work to increase bone mass.

The main findings are that exercise reduced circulating levels of a bone protein that inhibits bone formation (sclerostin) and increased levels of insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I), a hormone with osteogenic effects.

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Effect of Moderate-Intensity Exercise Training on Peak Oxygen Consumption in Patients With Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Sara Saberi, MD Assistant Professor Inherited Cardiomyopathy Program Frankel Cardiovascular Center University of Michigan Hospital and Health Systems

Dr. Sara Saberi

Sara Saberi, MD
Assistant Professor
Inherited Cardiomyopathy Program
Frankel Cardiovascular Center
University of Michigan Hospital and Health Systems 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy are often told not to exercise or to significantly curb their exercise due to concern over the potential risk of increased ventricular arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. There is no data regarding risks/benefits of exercise in HCM though. There is, however, data that shows that patients with HCM are less active and more obese than the general population AND a majority feel that exercise restrictions negatively impact their emotional well-being.

So, we devised a randomized clinical trial of a 16-week moderate-intensity aerobic exercise program versus usual activity with the primary outcome being change in peak VO2 (oxygen consumption). This exercise intervention resulted in a 1.27 mL/kg/min improvement in peak VO2 over the usual activity group, a statistically significant finding. There were no major adverse events (no death, aborted sudden cardiac death, appropriate ICD therapies, or sustained ventricular tachycardia). There was also a 10% improvement in quality of life as measured by the Physical Functioning scale of the SF-36v2.

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High School Students Increasingly Specializing in One Sport

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Michael G. Ciccotti, MD Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery Rothman Institute Chief of Sports Medicine, and Director of the Sports Medicine Fellowship Thomas Jefferson University

Dr. Michael Ciccotti

Michael G. Ciccotti, MD
Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Rothman Institute
Chief of Sports Medicine, and
Director of the Sports Medicine Fellowship
Thomas Jefferson University

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? 

Response: No doubt sports plays a huge role in the United States and all over world with millions of young people between the ages 6 and 18 participating in an organized sport on a regular basis.

Over the past decade, there has been a tremendous focus on youth single sport specialization (SSS), with pressure from coaches, parents and the athletes themselves to participate in one sport year round. Many participants, coaches and parents believe that early specialization may allow the young athlete to become better and progress more quickly in their sport, perhaps allowing them a greater chance of becoming a professional athlete. This drive toward early specialization has been fueled by popular icons i.e. Tiger Woods (golf) and Lionel “Leo” Messi (soccer) as well as by media hits such as Friday Night Tykes (young football players) and The Short Game (7-year old golfers). The pop-psych writer, Malcolm Gladwell, whose The 10,000 Hour Rule (in his book Outliers) holds that 10,000 hours of “deliberate practice” are needed to become world-class in any field may have also encouraged the specialization trend.

There is little doubt that youth sports may encourage a lifelong interest in a healthy lifestyle as well as improved self-esteem and social relationships. The flip side is that extreme training and singular focus on a sport can lead to stress on the developing musculo-skeletal system, a pressure to succeed at all costs, reduced fun, burnout and sometimes social isolation.

The dilemma we are beginning to scratch the surface of is does single sport specialization enhance the likelihood of getting to an elite level and does it increase the risk of injury? There is a growing sense in the medical community that SSS raises injury risk without enhancing progression to a higher level.

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Gender Differences in Sweating Explained By Size

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Sean Notley, PhD. Postdoctoral Fellow School of Human Kinetics | École des sciences de l'activité physique University of Ottawa | Université d'Ottawa Ottawa ON

Dr. Notley

Sean Notley, PhD.
Postdoctoral Fellow
School of Human Kinetics | École des sciences de l’activité physique
University of Ottawa | Université d’Ottawa
Ottawa ON

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Gender-differences in human heat loss (skin blood flow and sweating) have long been ascribed to innate differences between men and women. However, we believed that these were more related more to size than to gender, because most previous research compared average (larger) men with average (smaller) women. In our view, the size and shape (morphology) of an individual might be as important, if not more important, than gender in determining heat loss.

When we matched men and women for body morphology, and when we studied those participants in tolerable conditions, we found that larger men and women were more dependent on sweating and less on skin blood flow, while smaller individuals were more reliant on skin blood flow and less on sweating. Moreover, as anticipated, gender differences in those heat-loss responses could be explained almost entirely by individual variations in morphology.

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Weak Thigh Muscles Contribute to Knee Arthritis in Women

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Adam Culvenor, PT, PhD

Dr. Adam Culvenor

Adam Culvenor, PT, PhD
Research Fellow,Institute of Anatomy
Paracelsus Medizinische Privatuniversität
Strubergasse Salzburg, Austria

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Thigh muscle weakness, particularly of the knee extensors (quadriceps), is a common feature of people with knee osteoarthritis. Thigh muscle weakness could be a consequence of knee osteoarthritis, or precede knee osteoarthritis development. There is conflicting evidence regarding the role of thigh muscle weakness as a risk factor for incident knee osteoarthritis in both men and women. Thigh muscle specific strength is a measure of muscle quality incorporating both the capacity of the muscle to produce force as well as muscle structure (ie. size, cross-sectional area), and preliminary data suggests this may be a more relevant measure of strength in relation to knee osteoarthritis development.

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Physical Activity Not Enough To Ward Off Weight Gain

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Lara Dugas, PhD, MPH, FTOS Public Health Sciences Loyola University Chica

Dr. Lara Dugas

Lara Dugas, PhD, MPH, FTOS
Public Health Sciences
Loyola University Chicago

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: Our NIH-funded study is led by Dr. Amy Luke, Public Health Sciences, Loyola University Chicago, and is titled “Modeling the Epidemiologic Transition study” or METS. It was initiated in 2010, and 2,500 young African-origin adults were recruited from 5 countries, spanning the Human Development Index (HDI), a WHO index used to rank countries according to 4 tiers of development. The 5 countries include the US, Seychelles, Jamaica, South Africa, and Ghana. Within each country 500 young adults, 25-45 yrs., and 50% male, were recruited and followed prospectively for 3 years. Each year, contactable participants completed a health screening, body composition, wore an activity monitor for 7 days, and told researchers everything they had eaten in the preceding 24hrs. Our main research questions we were trying to answer were to understand the impact of diet and physical activity on the development of obesity, and cardiovascular disease in young adults. It was important to have countries spanning the HDI, with differences in both country-level dietary intake and physical activity levels.

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Physical Activity and Abnormal Blood Glucose Among Healthy Weight Adults

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Arch G. Mainous III, PhD  HSRMP Department Chair Florida Blue Endowed Professor of Health Administration University of Florida Health

Dr. Arch G. Mainous III

Arch G. Mainous III, PhD
HSRMP Department Chair
Florida Blue Endowed Professor of Health Administration
University of Florida Health

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: As our post-industrial society becomes more and more sedentary, there is a concern that a lack of activity is associated with poor health outcomes like diabetes. At the same time, the medical community has a strong focus on determining whether patients are overweight or obese as a way to classify them as  being at higher risk for poor health outcomes. However, individuals at a “healthy weight” in general, are considered to be at low risk. Some recent studies have shown that many individuals at “healthy weight” are not metabolically healthy. How then might we predict who at “healthy weight” would be unhealthy? We hypothesized that individuals at “healthy weight” who had a sedentary lifestyle would be more likely to have prediabetes or undiagnosed diabetes.

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Physical Activity Linked to Improved Survival from Metastatic Colon Cancer

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Brendan John Guercio, M.D. Clinical Fellow in Medicine (EXT) Brigham and Women's Hospital

Dr. Brendan Guercio

Brendan John Guercio, M.D.
Clinical Fellow in Medicine (EXT)
Brigham and Women’s Hospital

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Sedentary lifestyle is a known risk factor for the development of colon cancer and has been associated with increased disease recurrence and mortality in patients with early stage colorectal cancer. This is the first study to our knowledge to show an association between increased physical activity (i.e. non-sedentary lifestyle) and improved survival and progression-free survival in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer.

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45 Minutes of Exercise Per Week Maintains Function in Adults With Arthritis

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dorothy D. Dunlop Ph.D. Professor of Medicine and Preventive Medicine Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine Institute for Public Health and Medicine Center for Healthcare Studies Chicago, IL 60611

Dr. Dorothy Dunlop

Dorothy D. Dunlop Ph.D.
Professor of Medicine and Preventive Medicine
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Institute for Public Health and Medicine
Center for Healthcare Studies
Chicago, IL 60611 

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

 

  • We know is being active is good for health.
  • Good evidence supports the current federal guidelines of doing 150 minutes of moderate physical activity each week to prevent serious conditions such as heart disease
  • But only 1 in 10 older US adults with arthritis in their lower limb joints (e.g., knees) meet federal physical activity guidelines
  • Inadequate physical activity is a major public health concern because It can lead to poor function, which threatens a person’s ability to live independently.

These issues motivated our study to investigate the minimum time commitment needed to improve function (or sustain high function) for adults with lower joint osteoarthritis.

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“Weekend Warriors” Reduce Mortality From Heart Disease and Cancer

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Gary O’Donovan, Ph.D. Research Associate: Exercise as Medicine School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine Loughborough University

Dr. Gary O’Donovan,

Gary O’Donovan, Ph.D.
Research Associate: Exercise as Medicine
School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences
National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine
Loughborough University

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: This study was inspired by the classic Harvard University study of weekend warriors. It was a privilege to work with Professor I-Min Lee, one of the authors of the classic study. Our study was much larger than the classic study.

With greater statistical power, we found that, compared with inactive adults, all-cause mortality, cardiovascular disease mortality, and cancer mortality risks were significantly lower in weekend warriors who performed the recommended amount of 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous activity in one or two sessions per week. Our study extends the classic study by showing that the benefits of the weekend warrior physical activity pattern are much the same in men and women.

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In-Bed Cycling Feasible for ICU Patients on Ventilation

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Michelle Kho, PT, PhD</strong> Canada Research Chair in Critical Care Rehabilitation and Knowledge Translation Assistant Professor School of Rehabilitation Science McMaster University

Dr. Michelle Kho

Michelle Kho, PT, PhD
Canada Research Chair in Critical Care Rehabilitation and Knowledge Translation
Assistant Professor
School of Rehabilitation Science
McMaster University

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: Patients who survive the ICU are at risk for muscle weakness and can experience physical functional disability lasting 5 to 8 years after the ICU. From a study conducted in Belgium, patients who were randomized to receive cycling after being in ICU for 2 weeks walked farther at ICU discharge than those who did not. Other research supported physiotherapy starting within days of starting mechanical ventilation to improve functional outcomes. Our CYCLE research program combines these 2 concepts – Can we start cycling very early in a patient’s ICU stay, and will this improve functional outcomes post-ICU?

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Light-Intensity Activities Can Improve Glycemic Control in Diabetics

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Bernard M Duvivier  Department of Human Biology and Movement Science NUTRIM School for Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University Medical Centre Maastricht, the Netherlands

Dr. Bernard M Duvivier

Bernard M Duvivier 
Department of Human Biology and Movement Science
NUTRIM School for Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University Medical Centre
Maastricht, the Netherlands

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?  What are the main findings?

Response: The health benefits of exercise have been well established but sitting is a risk factor for health, independent of exercise.

As many people with type 2 diabetes don’t like to exercise we investigated whether replacing sitting time with light-intensity activities (standing and light walking) is equally effective to exercise when energy expenditure is comparable. Our results suggest that for people with type 2 diabetes, light-intensity activities (light walking and standing) can be an alternative to exercise to improve glucose regulation.

In addition we showed that too much sitting has negative effects on insulin sensitivity which could not be fully compensated by 1 hour of exercise per day.

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Walking 900 Steps Can Prevent Functional Decline in Hospitalized Patients

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Maayan Agmon, PhD The Cheryl Spencer Department of Nursing Faculty of Social Welfare and Health Studies University of Haifa Haifa, Israel

Dr. Maayan Agmon

Maayan Agmon, PhD
The Cheryl Spencer Department of Nursing
Faculty of Social Welfare and Health Studies
University of Haifa
Haifa, Israel

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: To address the issue of functional decline during and post hospitalization . Up to 40% of older adults decline in their function at the time of hospitalization and acute illness. Most part of this functional decline is not explained by illness itself. So far, we know that in-hospital mobility is a protective factor but how much walking is required to prevent this decline has yet to be determined.

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Non-Exercise Algorithm Predicts Fitness and Lifestyle-Related Disease

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Bjarne M. Nes, PhD
K.G. Jebsen Center for Exercise in
Medicine, Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Trondheim, Norway.

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: It is well known that cardiorespiratory fitness is an important predictor of future cardiovascular disease risk. Still, fitness levels are rarely measured in clinical practice, likely because of costly and time-consuming procedures that requires quite a lot of training.

Therefore, we wanted to test the ability of a simple estimation of fitness, from a so-called non-exercise algorithm, to identify individuals at high and low risk of cardiovascular mortality. We tested fitness alone and in combination with traditional risk factors such as high blood pressure, cholesterol, smoking and family history of heart disease and diabetes, among 38,480 men and women from the Nord-Trondelag Health Study in Norway. We found that estimated fitness strongly predicts premature deaths from all causes and that traditional clinical risk factors added little above and beyond fitness in terms of predicting risk.

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Which Sports Reduce Risk of Mortality?

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr. Emmaneul Stamatakis PhD, MSc, BSc Associate Professor | NHMRC Senior Research Fellow Charles Perkins Centre, Prevention Research Collaboration School of Public Health, Sydney Medical School The University of Sydney

Dr. Emmaneul Stamatakis

Dr. Emmaneul Stamatakis PhD, MSc, BSc
Associate Professor | NHMRC Senior Research Fellow
Charles Perkins Centre, Prevention Research Collaboration
School of Public Health, Sydney Medical School
The University of Sydney

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: We examined the association between participation in different sports and risk of death during subsequent decade in a large sample of >80k adults aged 30 and over who lived in Scotland and England between 2994 and 2008 .

We found the following significant reduction in risk of dying from all causes among participants compared with non-participants: cycling 15%, aerobics 27%, swimming 28%, racquet balls 47%; there was no significant reduction in mortality for running/jogging and football/rugby. We also found the following significant reduction in risk of dying from cardiovascular diseases: aerobics 36%, swimming 41%, racquet balls 56%; there were no significant reduction in mortality for running, cycling and football/rugby. Results in both cases were adjusted for the potential confounders: age, sex, chronic conditions, alcohol drinking and smoking habits, mental health, obesity, education level, doctor-diagnosed CVD, cancer, weekly volume of other physical activity besides the sport (including walking and domestic activity.

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The Health ABC Study: Simple Exercise Test Predicts Heart Failure

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Vasiliki Georgiopoulou MD MPH PhD Assistant Professor of Medicine (Cardiology) Emory University School of Medicine

Dr. Vasiliki Georgiopoulou

Vasiliki Georgiopoulou MD MPH PhD
Assistant Professor of Medicine (Cardiology)
Emory University School of Medicine

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Although existing evidence suggests that more exercise capacity is associated with lower risk of CV disease and death, we don’t know whether more exercise capacity would lead to lower risk for heart failure also. This would be especially important for older adults, who are the group with the highest risk to develop heart failure. We used the data of a cohort study to test this association.

The exercise capacity was evaluated by a walking test that is easy to perform – the long-distance corridor walk test. We observed that older adults who were able to complete the test had the lowest risk to develop heart failure and the lowest mortality rates, when compared with those who were not able to complete the test and those who could not do the test for medical reasons. We also observed that changes in exercise capacity 4 years later did not predict subsequent heart failure or mortality – perhaps because less fit older patients had already developed heart failure or had died.

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High Fitness Level Can Reduce Cardiovascular Risk of Prolonged Daily Sitting

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Ulrik Wisløff, PhD Professor, Head of K.G. Jebsen Center for Exercise in Medicine Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging Norwegian University of Science and Technology Norway

Dr. Ulrik Wisløff

Ulrik Wisløff, PhD
Professor, Head of K.G. Jebsen Center for Exercise in Medicine
Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Norway

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Prolonged time spent sedentary on a daily basis is detrimental for general health and is associated with increased risk of developing and dying from lifestyle related diseases such as cardiovascular disease – even in those following todays advice for physical activity given by health authorities worldwide. Number of hours spent inactive tend to increase with increased age. A person’s fitness level is regarded the best predictor of future health. We tested, in older adults (aged 70-77 years old) whether meeting physical activity recommendations and/or having high age-specific fitness level attenuated the adverse effect of prolonged sedentary time on cardiovascular risk factor clustering.

Main finding was that high age-specific fitness level fully attenuated the adverse effect of prolonged sedentary time on clustering of cardiovascular risk factors, independent of meeting the physical activity recommendation in older adults.

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Walking After Meals May Lower Blood Sugar

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Andrew Reynolds Department of Human NutritionUniversity Otago Dunedin New Zealand

Andrew Reynolds

Andrew Reynolds
Department of Human NutritionUniversity
Otago 
Dunedin New Zealand

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Current guidelines for people with type 2 diabetes are to undertake activities such as walking for at least 150 minutes a week, or 30 minutes a day. When to walk in the day is not specified. We thought it reasonable that walking after meals would improve blood sugars more so than a walk where the timing was unspecified.

Our randomised controlled trial considered exactly this, a prescription to walk as per the guideline of 30 minutes a day and a prescription to walk for 10 minutes after each meal. Our participants were free-living, but wore accelerometers to record their movement, and continuous glucose monitoring systems to observe their blood glucose levels. We found that post-meal blood sugar levels dropped 12 per cent on average when the participants followed the walking after meals advice compared to walking at any time of the day. Most of this effect came from the highly significant 22 per cent reduction in blood sugar when walking after evening meals, which were the most carbohydrate heavy, and were followed by the most sedentary time.

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Exercise and Pregnancy in Recreational and Elite Athletes Reviewed

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Prof. Kari Bø PhD Norwegian School of Sport Sciences Oslo, Norway

Prof. Kari Bø

Prof. Kari Bø PhD
Norwegian School of Sport Sciences
Oslo, Norway

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: The background is that more and more female elite athletes continue to exercise into their 30s and beyond and more want to become pregnant and some to continue to compete at the same level after giving birth.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: To date there is little scientific knowledge on elite athletes and others who perform strenuous exercise (eg women in the military) during pregnancy and after childbirth and we therefore have to be cautious when recommending intensity levels of both endurance and strength training exercise. However, given the knowledge we have now.

  • Elite athletes planning pregnancy may consider reducing high impact training routines in the week after ovulation and refraining from repetitive heavy lifting regimens during the first trimester as some evidence suggests increased miscarriage risk.
  • There is little risk of abnormal fetal heart rate response when elite athletes exercise at <90% of their maximal heart rates in the second and third trimesters.
  • Baby birthweights of exercising women are less likely to be excessively large (>4000g) and not at increased risk of being excessively small (<2500g).
  • Exercise does not increase the risk of preterm birth.
  • Exercise during pregnancy does not increase the risk of induction of labour, epidural anesthesia, episiotomy or perineal tears, forceps or vacuum deliveries.
  • There is some encouraging evidence that the first stage of labour (before full dilatation) is shorter in exercising women.
  • There is also some encouraging evidence that exercise throughout pregnancy may reduce the need for caesarean section.

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Do People Wearing Activity Trackers Really Exercise More?

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Aarti Sahasranaman, PhD
Duke-NUS Gradaute Medical School
Singapore

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: More than half of adults in developed countries do not achieve recommended levels of physical activity. Despite the popularity of activity trackers as a tool for motivating and monitoring activity levels, little research exists on whether they can help people lead healthier lives, or if financial incentives could encourage people to wear them for longer and achieve higher fitness levels. One in ten US adults owns an activity tracker but research suggests that about a third of people abandon them within 6 months of purchase.

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Detecting Underlying Cardiovascular Disease in Young Competitive Athletes

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. James McKinney MD MSc FRCP(C)
Division of Cardiology
University of British Columbia

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Sudden cardiac death (SCD) is the leading medical cause of death in young athletes. Sporting activity may predispose athletes with underlying cardiovascular conditions to develop life threatening ventricular arrhythmias during physical exercise. Despite being a relatively rare event, the death of a young healthy person is a tragic event that is difficult to comprehend. The prevalence of an underlying cardiovascular disorder in young athletes that predisposes to SCD is approximately 0.3%.

Sudden cardiac death is often the first clinical manifestation of an underlying cardiovascular condition; up to 80% of athletes are previously asymptomatic. Pre-participation screening is the systematic practice of medically evaluating athletes for the purpose of identifying (or raising suspicion of) abnormalities that could provoke sudden death. There is agreement amongst sporting and medical bodies that athletes should undergo some form of pre-participation screening. An Achilles’ heel of screening is the significant number of false-positive screens that require subsequent costly secondary testing to rule out disease. Prevention of sudden cardiac death among athletes is a common goal, however the optimal strategy for its achievement is uncertain.

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Dental Occlusion Can Influence Standing Balance

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Sonia Julià-Sánchez, PhD
Universitat de Barcelona

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Over the last few years, a growing interest has focused on the potential correlation between the stomatognathic system and the body balance. While this relationship is still a subject for debate, it is well known that sensory information contributes differently on the postural control regulation depending on the conditions of the surface area. Therefore, we hypothesized that dental occlusion may contribute differently on the body balance control depending on the stability condition (stable versus unstable) and that influence might be more evident in fatigue conditions due to reorganization of the sensory information sources.

In the current study we aimed to determine whether:

(i) dental occlusion influences body balance in stable and unstable surfaces, and

(ii) the influence of dental occlusion on the balance control comes strongly into effect under fatigue conditions.

Our results showed that dental occlusion influenced balance control, at unstable level, both at rest and fatigue condition. However, when measuring at stable level, the influence of dental occlusion only reached significance in fatigue condition.

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Is Muscle Memory a Myth?

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Maléne Lindholm, PhD Karolinska Institutet Dept. of Physiology & Pharmacology Stockholm Sweden

Dr. Maléne Lindholm

Maléne Lindholm, PhD
Karolinska Institutet
Dept. of Physiology & Pharmacology
Stockholm Sweden

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: It is well known that exercise training provides marked health benefits and can prevent and treat a broad set of diseases. Therefore, a deeper understanding and characterization of the molecular processes behind training adaptation is essential for human health.

This study aimed at exploring the effects of endurance training on the human skeletal muscle transcriptome (activity of all genes) and investigate the possible presence of a muscle memory of training. To do this, the healthy volunteers in this study first trained only one leg, 4 times per week for 3 months. After 9 months of detraining, the subjects then came back and trained both legs in the same way as during the first training period, thus one leg was then previously well-trained and one previously untrained. This meant that each individual was their own control, as both legs have the same genome, experience the same stress, diet etc. Only the training status differed.

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Athletes Should Be Checked For Ventricular Hypertrophy Before Triathalon

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Richard Moon, MD, CM, MSc, FRCP(C), FACP, FCC Medical Director, Hyperbaric Center Professor of Anesthesiology Department / Division Anesthesiology / GVTU Division Medicine / Pulmonary Duke University School of Medicine

Dr. Richard Moon

Richard Moon, MD
Professor of Anesthesiology
Professor of Medicine
Medical Director, Center for Hyperbaric Medicine & Environmental Physiology
Duke University Medical Center
Durham, NC 27710

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: For several years we have been investigating the causes of immersion pulmonary edema (IPE, also known as swimming-induced pulmonary edema or SIPE). We determined that during exercise while immersed in cold water pulmonary artery and wedge pressures of individuals who are SIPE-susceptible are higher than normal. This demonstrated that SIPE is a form of hemodynamic pulmonary edema. It is certainly plausible that SIPE could cause death, and indeed a few fatal cases had been reported in the medical literature, mostly in scuba divers. After reading of deaths in young, apparently fit and healthy triathletes we hypothesized that some of these deaths were probably due to  swimming-induced pulmonary edema . It is easy to diagnose SIPE in a living individual, using a stethoscope or chest x-ray/CT. However, since almost anyone who dies from any cause, particularly if attempted resuscitation has occurred, will have pulmonary edema at autopsy. Before concluding that death has occurred due to SIPE, other clues are therefore necessary.

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Association Between Regular Exercise and Decreased Risk of Cesarean Delivery

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Katrine M. Owe PhD Department of Psychosomatics and Health Behaviour Norwegian Institute of Public Health Norwegian National Advisory Unit on Women's Health Oslo University Hospital, Rikshospitalet OSLO, Norway

Dr. Katrine Owe

Katrine M. Owe, PhD
Domain for Mental and Physical Health
Norwegian Institute of Public Health
OSLO, Norway
Norwegian National Advisory Unit on Women’s Health
Oslo University Hospital, Rikshospitalet
Oso, Norway

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: The rising cesarean delivery rates in developed countries are of great concern. Given the many adverse consequences of repeated cesarean deliveries for both mother and child, identifying factors associated with the decision to perform the first cesarean is important.

Growing evidence show that regular exercise during pregnancy is associated with a lower risk of gestational diabetes, preeclampsia and excessive birth weight, all of which are highly correlated with having a cesarean delivery.

Results from previous studies examining the relationship between pregnancy exercise and mode of delivery, are inconsistent. Small sample size, not population-based, reporting crude estimates, and not powered to study cesarean delivery, are common methodological limitations in previous studies.

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Right Ventricular Changes in Olympic Athletes Described

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Antonio Pelliccia, MD, FESC Chief of Cardiology Institute of Sport Medicine and Science Rome

Dr. Antonio Pelliccia

Antonio Pelliccia, MD, FESC
Chief of Cardiology
Institute of Sport Medicine and Science
Rome

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: The awareness of the relevant role of arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) as cause of athletic field events and the refined Task Force (TF) criteria for the diagnosis of the disease have prompted a large scientific interest and triggered a vast scientific literature on this issue.
Indeed, the recent observations by Heidbuchel and La Gerche based on data from a selected group of ultra-endurance athletes, suggesting that strenuous, chronic endurance exercise may ultimately cause, per se, RV dysfunction have further stimulated the need to define the characteristics and limits of training-induced RV remodelling.

At present, however, no studies have assessed the characteristic of physiologic right ventricular remodelling as derived from a large population of highly-trained athletes, including a sizeable number of women and comprising a broad spectrum of summer and winter Olympic sport disciplines.

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Tai Chi Studied For Muscular Neck Pain

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Romy Lauche, PhD Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Research Fellow Australian Research Centre in Complementary and Integrative Medicine (ARCCIM) Faculty of Health | University of Technology Sydney

Dr. Romy Lauche

Romy Lauche, PhD
Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Australian Research Centre in Complementary and Integrative Medicine (ARCCIM)
Faculty of Health | University of Technology Sydney

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Many people are affected by persistent or recurrent neck pain. So far the only intervention with real benefit is exercise therapy, independent of the type of exercise used. Despite the fact that musculoskeletal disorders including back and neck pain have been found predictive of Tai Chi use, no study to date has investigated its potential in the treatment of chronic non-specific neck pain.

Our study found that 12 weeks of Tai Chi significantly reduced neck pain intensity, and improved quality of life, however no differences were found between Tai Chi and conventional neck exercises. Both interventions were well tolerated, and participants were satisfied with either intervention.

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Barefoot Running Changes Strike Pattern in Long Distance Runners

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Marcos Muñoz Jimenez
University of Jaén

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Barefoot running has become very popular in recent years and remains a hotly debated topic among runners. The debate about the pros and cons of barefoot running is current.

Many coaches consider barefoot training to have an effect on muscle strength and to be important for performance and for preventing injuries. The main objective of this study is to determine what changes in foot strike, inversion-eversion and foot rotation are produced after a 12-week programme of barefoot running with progressive volume at the end of the athletes daily training session.

Our data support that a 12-week programme of barefoot running training, applied by progressively increasing the volume of barefoot running, causes significant changes to foot strike patterns with a tendency towards midfoot strike, regardless of running speed.
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“Walking Meetings” Can Improve Physical Fitness In White Collar Workplaces

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Caban-Martinez, DO, PhD MPH, CPH Assistant Professor, Department of Public Health Sciences, Division of Environment & Public Health Associate Director, Miami Occupational Research Group (MORG) Director, Musculoskeletal Disorders and Occupational Health Lab

Dr. Caban-Martinez

Alberto J. Caban-Martinez, DO, PhD MPH, CPH
Assistant Professor, Department of Public Health Sciences, Division of Environment & Public Health
Associate Director, Miami Occupational Research Group
Director, Musculoskeletal Disorders and Occupational Health Lab
University of Miami

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Obesity remains one the largest public health burdens in the United States. Strategies that support healthy nutrition, physical activity and well-being are needed to achieve our national goals of Healthy People 2020. Opportunities for physical activity in the workplace are limited. As our U.S. economy moves from a blue-collar manufacturing enterprise to an increasingly service and information producing workforce, sedentary behavior at the worksite has unfortunately increased. Long work hours seated, short paths to printing or conference room meetings can be leading to increased overweight and obesity workforce trends documented in the U.S. population. Our University of Miami, occupational health and safety research team(www.CabanMartinezLAB.com) developed and evaluated a Walking Meeting (WaM) protocol for white-collar job site using input from thought leaders, key stakeholders, and the scientific and grey literature. We pilot tested the feasibility, acceptability and implementation of the WaM protocol in small group of white collar workers at a large university center. We found that converting just one seated meeting per week at work into a walking meeting increased the work-related physical activity levels of workers by 10 minutes. This increase in physical activity also supports the American Heart Association’s recommendations of 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity physical activity for adults, or about 30 minutes each weekday.

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Consensus Statement Discusses Successful Implementation of Physical Activity in Schools

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Peter Krustrup PhD Professor of Team Sport and Health Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports Copenhagen Centre for Team Sport and Health University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Dr. Peter Krustrup

Peter Krustrup PhD
Professor of Team Sport and Health
Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports
Copenhagen Centre for Team Sport and Health
University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Dr. Krustrup discusses ideas formulated in the Copenhagen Consensus Conference 2016: children, youth, and physical activity in schools and during leisure time.

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: A desire to improve children’s and youth’s health, well-being and social inclusion motivated researchers at University of Copenhagen, Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports to gather 24 international top level researchers from a variety of academic disciplines at a consensus conference in Denmark on 4-7 April 2016. The aim of the Copenhagen Consensus Conference in 2016 was to reach an evidence-based consensus within the four themes:

1) Physical activity in children and youth: Fitness and health.
2) Physical activity in children and youth: Cognitive functioning
3) Physical activity in children and youth: Engagement, motivation and psychological well-being
4) Physical activity in children and youth: Social inclusion and physical activity implementation strategies.

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Physical Activity Linked To Significant Decrease in Diabetes Incidence

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr-Andrea-M-KriskaDr. Andrea M. Kriska PhD MS
Professor, Department of Epidemiology
Graduate School of Public Health
Pittsburgh, PA 15261

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Dr. Kriska:  The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) was a well administered national research study primarily supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIDDK) that demonstrated that lifestyle intervention with weight loss and physical activity goals can prevent type 2 diabetes in diverse, high risk US adults. The importance of physical activity in preventing diabetes development in the DPP until now was thought to be due to its role in achieving weight loss and weight maintenance but activity was not considered a strong key factor alone.

The lifestyle group had a significantly greater increase in physical activity and decrease in weight than the other two groups. They also had a 58% decrease in diabetes incidence compared to the control group. The successful decrease in T2D held across all age, sex, baseline BMI and ethnicity/race subgroups.

Despite the fact that the lifestyle intervention was then offered to all participants, in the follow-up years, the lifestyle participants still maintained a lower cumulative diabetes incidence that could not be explained by differences in weight loss.

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Study Finds No Evidence of Cardiac Impairment in Elite Endurance Athletes

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr. Philipp Bohm MD Institute of Sports and Preventive Medicine Saarland University, Saarbrücken, Germany

Dr. Philipp Bohm

Dr. Philipp Bohm MD
Institute of Sports and Preventive Medicine
Saarland University, Saarbrücken, Germany

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Dr. Bohm: It is currently under debate whether the cumulative effects of high-volume, high-intensity endurance training induce chronic cardiac damage, mainly involving the right heart. A Belgian study group even put forward the hypothesis of an ’exercise-induced arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy’.

In our study, we examined 33 male elite master endurance athletes (average age: 47y) by means of exercise testing, echocardiography and Cardiac MRI and compared them to a control group of 33 men who were similar in terms of age, size and weight but who had not done any kind of endurance exercise. The group of athletes, which included former Olympians as well as previous Ironman participants and champions, have been training at an elite level for around 30 years and still continue to train for an average of about 17 hours a week. Thus, we made sure to have the highest possible cumulative training load in our athlete’s group.

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?

Dr. Bohm: Our key findings were that athletes demonstrated clear evidence of structural exercise-induced cardiac remodeling as reflected by relative biventricular dilation and hypertrophy in comparison with controls. Importantly, we found no evidence of lasting damage, pathological enlargement or functional impairment of either the right or left ventricle in the athletes who had been doing long-term intensive elite-level endurance exercise.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Dr. Bohm: According to our results, chronic right ventricular damage in asymptomatic elite endurance master athletes with lifelong high training volumes seems to be unlikely. Thus, the hypothesis of an exercise-induced arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy, which had been put forward by Belgian researchers, has to be questioned.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Bohm:  Our cohort of elite master athletes represents to date our best means of investigating the long-term impact of years of competition-level endurance sport on the heart. Data from longitudinal studies, in which subjects have been monitored by MRI for years, potentially decades, do not exist. In the future, we should aim for long-term, longitudinal studies with ethnically diverse endurance athletes to comprehensively understand how cumulative high-dose exercise impacts health.

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Citation:

Philipp Bohm, Günther Schneider, Lutz Linneweber, Axel Rentzsch, Nadine Krämer, Hashim Abdul-Khaliq, Wilfried Kindermann, Tim Meyer, Jürgen Scharhag. Right and Left Ventricular Function and Mass in Male Elite Master AthletesClinical Perspective. Circulation, 2016; 133 (20): 1927 DOI: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.115.020975

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