09 Oct Preserving the MAMIL
We all know exercise is good for us, the recent PURE study looking at the amount of exercise people do has confirmed this scientifically. More and more of us are taking up exercise on a regular basis we can see this by the number of cyclists on our roads at the weekend and in evenings. Who doesn’t want to get in shape? It makes sense, we look healthier, we feel healthier and we live longer. We all would equally like to win the lottery but hard work and regular exercise seems like a better bet.
A group in the States is has looked into the unluckier side of exercise. Over a period of 10 years in US triathlons sadly 135 athletes died during the event. Of those that underwent post-mortem a third had severely narrowed coronary arteries. The chances of having sudden death during a triathlon increased with age. The overall chance of sudden death in these events was very low about 1 in 60.000 and the chance of having a heart attack due to a detectable narrowing in a coronary artery approximates to getting 5 numbers in the UK lottery, which would win you about £1000.
If these facts are making you think “it could be you” and you are holding back from taking part or just worried particularly, if you have significant coronary risk factors, help is at hand. Screening with coronary CT scanning is available which could identify narrowed arteries and improve your odds. Potential astronauts have these tests and are not allowed to travel into space if they have any evidence of coronary disease.