Introduction: Although there is evidence that a significant proportion of veteran athletes have coronary atherosclerotic disease (CAD), its prevalence in recreational athletes with low to intermediate cardiovascular (CV) risk is not established. This study aimed to characterize the coronary atherosclerotic burden in veteran male recreational athletes with low to intermediate CV risk. Methods: Asymptomatic male athletes aged ≥40 years with low to intermediate risk, who exercised >4 hours/week for >5 years, underwent cardiac computed tomography (CT) for coronary artery calcium (CAC) scoring and CT angiography. High coronary atherosclerotic burden was defined as at least one of the following: CAC score >100; CAC score ≥75th percentile; obstructive CAD; disease involving the left main, three vessels or two vessels including the proximal left anterior descending artery; segment involvement score >5; or CT Leaman score ≥5. Athletes were categorized by tertiles of exercise volume, calculated by metabolic equivalent of task (MET) scores. Results: A total of 105 athletes were included, all with SCORE <4%, mainly engaged in high-dynamic sports. Median exercise volume was 66 (44-103) METs/hour/week, with 8±5 hours training/week and 17±10 years of exercise. A high coronary atherosclerotic burden was present in 27 (25.7%) athletes. Ten (9.5%) athletes had CAC score >100, 13 (12.4%) had CAC score ≥75th percentile and six (5.7%) had obstructive lesions. The extent and severity of coronary plaques did not differ according to exercise volume. Conclusions: The prevalence of subclinical CAD detected by cardiac CT in veteran male recreational athletes with low to intermediate CV risk was high. Up to a quarter of our cohort had a high coronary atherosclerotic burden.
|Translated title of the contribution||Coronary atherosclerotic burden in veteran male recreational athletes with low to intermediate cardiovascular risk|
|Journal||Revista Portuguesa de Cardiologia|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 2020|
- Coronary artery disease
- Risk stratification
- Veteran athletes