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March 16 , 2009

Sports Cardiology

Exercise in health and cardiovascular disease


Participation in athletics at both the recreational and competitive levels has grown enormously over the last decade, and now involves a substantial segment of the population of many countries, particularly those in Europe and North America. This change in the life-style of many individuals has been accompanied by the desire and necessity on the part of physicians to define the consequences of chronic athletic training and competition to the participant. Coincident with the of public interest in sporting competition has been the evolution and growth development of new non-invasive technologies in cardiology (such as M-mode and two-dimensional echocardiography and radionuclide angiography) which have permitted investigators to study directly and more precisely the morphology and function of the heart and cardiovascular system. Hence, over the past several years our knowledge has been greatly enhanced with regard to the features of the normal 'athlete heart' and the relationship of athletic conditioning to preexistent cardiovascular disease, as well as the causes of sudden death in athletes. The present treatise on 'Sports cardiology: Exercise in Health and Cardio­ vascular Disease' is an impressive reference document which is also timely. It fulfills an important role in summarizing most of the available data that has been accumulated over the last 10 years in a large number of athletes participating in a variety of different sports. Drs. I. Bekaert and R.
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