Episodic physical and sexual activity linked to cardiac events

January 01, 0001

Episodic physical and sexual activity linked to cardiac events

It has been proposed that strenuous activity can be a trigger of cardiac events. These US researchers performed a symstematic review of case- crossover studies of episodic physical and sexual activity on acute cardiac events. They searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Web of Science yielding fourteen studies.

The researchers found: "Episodic physical and sexual activity were associated with an increase in the risk of MI (RR = 3.45 and RR = 2.70, respectively). Episodic physical activity was associated with sudden cardiac death (SCD, RR = 4.98). The effect of triggers on the absolute rate of events was limited because exposure to physical and sexual activity is infrequent and their effect is transient. The absolute risk increase associated with 1 hour of additional physical or sexual activity per week was estimated as 2 to 3 per 10 000 person-years for MI and 1 per 10 000 person-years for SCD. Habitual activity levels significantly affected the association of episodic physical activity and MI, episodic physical activity and SCD, and sexual activity and MI. In all cases, individuals with lower habitual activity levels had an increased RR for the triggering effect. For every additional time per week an individual was habitually exposed to physical activity, the RR for MI decreased by approximately 45%, and the RR for SCD decreased by 30%."

The researchers concluded: "Acute cardiac events were significantly associated with episodic physical and sexual activity. This association was attenuated among persons with high levels of habitual physical activity."

Physical and sexual activity in people with low baseline level of physical activity is associated with a transient increase in cardiovascular risk

For the full abstract, click here.

JAMA 305(12):1225-1233, 23 March 2011
© 2011 American Medical Association
Association of Episodic Physical and Sexual Activity With Triggering of Acute Cardiac Events. Issa J. Dahabreh, Jessica K. Paulus.

Category: K. Circulatory. Keywords: physical activity, sexual activity, myocardial infarction, sudden cardiac death, acute coronary syndrome, systematic review with meta-analysis, journal watch.
Synopsis edited by Dr Paul Schaefer, Toledo, Ohio. Posted on Global Family Doctor 8 March 2011

Pearls are an independent product of the Cochrane primary care group and are meant for educational use and not to guide clinical care.