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Exercise capacity in a 78 year old patient with McArdle’s disease: it is never too late to start exercising
  1. M Perez1,
  2. M A Martin2,
  3. J C Rubio2,
  4. J L Maté-Muñoz1,
  5. F Gómez-Gallego1,
  6. C Foster3,
  7. A L Andreu4,
  8. J Arenas2,
  9. A Lucia1
  1. 1Universidad Europea de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
  2. 2Centro de Investigación, Hospital Universitario 12 de Octubre, Madrid
  3. 3Department of Exercise and Sport Science, University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, La Crosse, WI, USA
  4. 4Hospital Val d’Hebron, Barcelona, Spain
  1. Correspondence to:
 Professor Lucia
 Polideportivo Universidad Europea de Madrid, Villaviciosa de Odón Madrid 28670, Spain; alejandro.lucia{at}


The case is reported of a 78 year old man with McArdle’s disease and a history of treated coronary heart disease. Despite the pre-exercise administration of sucrose allowing the patient to exercise with normal physiological responses, and without typical McArdle’s symptoms or biochemical evidence of muscle damage, his exercise capacity was very low (V̇o2peak =  10.7 ml/min/kg), probably attributable to his lifetime of sedentary living. The data suggest that, with pre-exercise sucrose administration, such patients may be candidates for systematic reconditioning, which may improve functional capacity and quality of life.

  • ageing
  • glycogen phosphorylase deficiency
  • glycogenosis type V
  • muscle
  • maximum oxygen uptake

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  • Competing interests: none declared