Left Ventricular Dynamics During Exercise in Endurance Athletes
Sammanfattning: Large quantities of data have described left ventricular adaptation to endurance training, but basic concepts on left ventricular performance during exercise remain controversial. In this thesis, we present the results of studies of left ventricular dynamics during exercise in 89 endurance-trained athletes.Using radionuclide ventriculography, 35 female and 30 male endurance athletes were studied in supine position. During supine exercise at 70% of the age-expected maximal heart rate, the adjustments in left ventricular volumes were small, suggesting a high preload before exercise. Stroke volume increased by changes in the left ventricular end-diastolic volumes but no changes were observed in the end-systolic volumes. Moreover, no significant differences were noted between male and female athletes.Contrast echocardiography was utilized when 24 male endurance athletes were studied during upright exercise. An almost linear increase in stroke volume was seen from upright rest to upright exercise at a heart rate of 160 beats per minute. Stroke volume increased by an almost linear increase in end-diastolic volume and showed an initial small decrease in end-systolic volume. The left ventricular cavity became geometrically more spherical with the largest increase in the left ventricular end-diastolic short-axis cavity diameters in the mid and apical part of the left ventricle. Left ventricular long-axis length obtained from the epicardial apex to the middle of the mitral annulus at end-diastole showed no significant change from rest to exercise. The mitral annulus motion contributed to more than 50% of the stroke volume during exercise with no significant difference between septal and lateral annular motion at peak exercise. Major changes were observed in left ventricular filling indices during upright exercise. The mean transmitral pressure gradient showed a linear increase and increased several times as the mean diastolic time decreased, with large reductions in mean left ventricular filling time. Despite the shortened filling time, the heart was able to increase the filling rate (measured as volume per time) five times. This observation verifies that the heart has large reserves at rest and reveals the increase in capacity during exercise.
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