Background Endurance exercise training produces multiple cardiac adaptations including changes in electrophysiological function that may make endurance-trained athletes more vulnerable to atrial fibrillation (AF). This possible association is not recognised by many practising cardiologists and sports physicians. Consequently, we performed a literature review to examine the relationship between atrial fibrillation and endurance exercise training among athletes. PubMed was searched from January 1960 through December 2008 to identify articles examining the relationship between endurance exercise training and AF.
Results Evidence suggests that athletes are at increased risk for development of AF. Possible factors increasing AF in this population include increased parasympathetic tone, reduced sympathetic tone, increased atrial size and increased inflammation.
Discussion Suggested management of AF in athletes should follow similar principles to those used to manage AF in the general population.
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.