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High Blood Pressure & Cardiovascular Prevention

, Volume 25, Issue 4, pp 385–390 | Cite as

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy in Hypertensive Athletes can be Reduced by Antihypertensive Medication Despite Continuing Intense Aerobic Exercise

  • Sascha Ketelhut
  • Ingomar W. Franz
  • Reinhard G. Ketelhut
Original Article

Abstract

Introduction

Left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) can be successfully reduced by antihypertensive medication. Both hypertension and aerobic exercise can cause increases in left ventricular mass (LV-mass).

Aim

Therefore, hypertensive athletes with LVH were studied to investigate the effect of antihypertensive medication on LV-mass reduction despite continuing their regular intensive exercise programs.

Methods

14 previously untreated hypertensive male athletes (A) with LVH and a prolonged history of endurance training where included in the study. 50 previously untreated inactive comparable hypertensives with LVH served as controls (C). For both groups inclusion criteria were blood pressure (BP) at rest: > 140/90 mmHg, BP during ergometry (at 100 W): > 200/100 mmHg and. LV-mass-index > 125 g/m2. Echocardiography was performed to calculate LV-mass and function before and after 3 years of antihypertensive medication.

Results

Despite regularly aerobic training throughout the treatment period, LV mass decreased from 164 ± 19 g/m2 before to 97 ± 16 g/m2 after 3 years of therapy (p < 0.001). Controls with identical pressures demonstrated a decrease from 149 ± 29 g/m2 to 87 ± 15 g m2. There were similar decreases in LV wall thicknesses in both groups, whereas diastolic dimensions did not change significantly. Moreover, there was an increase in fractional fiber shortening as a measure of LV pump function in both groups of 15% in A and 11% in C, respectively.

Conclusions

In hypertensive athletes LVH due to hypertension can be reduced and LV-function can be improved by long-term antihypertensive medication despite regular aerobic exercise. Therefore, exercise does not interfere with the regression of LVH on account of antihypertensive therapy in hypertensive subjects.

Keywords

Left ventricular hypertrophy Hypertension Aerobic exercise Exercise training Antihypertensive treatment Blood pressure 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors thank the participants for taking part in the project and the Medical Center Berlin (MCB) for the opportunity to using their medical equipment.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Sport ScienceMartin-Luther-University Halle-WittenbergHalle (Saale)Germany
  2. 2.Klinik WehrawaldTodtmoosGermany
  3. 3.Medical Center Berlin (MCB)BerlinGermany
  4. 4.Institute of Sports ScienceHumboldt-UniversityBerlinGermany

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