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      Left Ventricular Wall Thickening Does Occur in Elite Power Athletes with or without Anabolic Steroid Use

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          Abstract

          Reports on the occurrence of left ventricular wall thickening in resistance-trained athletes have rejected the possibility for this physiological adaptation to occur without concomitant anabolic steroid abuse. Others have concluded short bursts of arterial hypertension that occur with maximal weight lifting are not sufficient to induce left ventricular wall thickening, and left ventricular wall thickness ≥13 mm should not be found in pure resistance-trained athletes. Therefore, we examined 4 elite resistance-trained athletes by two-dimensional echocardiography. In addition, we retrospectively examined the individual left ventricular dimensions of 13 bodybuilders from our previous echocardiographic studies. All 4 elite resistance-trained athletes had left ventricular wall thicknesses beyond 13 mm. One of the elite bodybuilders has the largest left ventricular wall thickness (16 mm) ever reported in a power athlete. Retrospectively, 43% of the drug-free bodybuilders and 100% of the steroid users had left ventricular wall thickness beyond the normal range of 11 mm. In addition, 1 drug-free subject and 3 steroid users were beyond the critical mark of 13 mm. No subjects demonstrated diastolic dysfunction. In contrast to previous reports, we have demonstrated that left ventricular wall thicknesses ≥13 mm can be found routinely in elite resistance-trained athletes. The use of anabolic steroids concomitant with intensive resistance exercise does appear to augment left ventricular size without dysfunction. Anabolic steroids may accelerate left ventricular wall thickening indirectly by increasing strength, thus augmenting the pressor response.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          CRD
          Cardiology
          10.1159/issn.0008-6312
          Cardiology
          S. Karger AG
          0008-6312
          1421-9751
          1998
          October 1998
          28 October 1998
          : 90
          : 2
          : 145-148
          Affiliations
          Departments of a Biomedical Sciences and b Medicine, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, Tex., USA
          Article
          6834 Cardiology 1998;90:145–148
          10.1159/000006834
          9778553
          © 1998 S. Karger AG, Basel

          Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

          Page count
          Tables: 2, References: 19, Pages: 4
          Categories
          Exercise and Rehabilitation

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