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Physical exercise after heart attack helps you to save your life

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 22 April 2018, 16:58 IST

It was revealed that exercising on a daily basis or being physically active after you suffered a heart attack can save your life.

A study conducted by the European Society of Cardiology suggested that becoming more physically active after a heart attack reduces the risk of death in a few years.

"It is well known that physically active people are less likely to have a heart attack and more likely to live longer," said lead author Örjan Ekblom. "However, we did not know the impact of exercise on people after a heart attack."

This study involved 22,227 patients in Sweden who had a myocardial infarction between 2005 and 2013. It was evaluated by the association between physical activity and survival after a heart attack.

The levels of physical exercise were reported 6-10 weeks and 12 months after the heart attack. The difference between answers was considered a change in physical activity over the year following the heart attack.

Patients were asked how many times they had exercised for 30 minutes or longer during the previous seven days. Patients were categorised as constantly inactive, reduced activity, increased activity, or constantly active.

A total of 1,087 patients died during an average follow-up of 4.2 years. The researchers analysed the association between the four categories of physical activity and death, after adjusting for age, sex, smoking, and clinical factors.

Compared to patients who were constantly inactive, the risk of death was 37 percent, 51 percent, and 59 percent lower in patients in the categories of reduced activity, increased activity, or constantly active, respectively.

Ekblom said, "Our study shows that patients can reduce their risk of death by becoming physically active after a heart attack. Patients who reported being physically active 6 to 10 weeks after the heart attack but became inactive afterward seem to have a carry-over benefit. But of course, the benefits for active people are even greater if they remain physically active."

The study enhanced the evidence for healthcare professionals and policy makers to promote physical activity accurately in heart attack patients.

"Exercising twice or more a week should be automatically advocated for heart attack patients in the same way that they receive advice to stop smoking, improve diet, and reduce stress," he added.

"Our study shows that this advice applies to all heart attack patients," he continued. "Exercise reduced the risk of death in patients with large and small myocardial infractions, and for smokers and non-smokers, for example."

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First published: 22 April 2018, 16:58 IST
 
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