Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research
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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2009  |  Volume : 130  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 681-688

Cardiovascular effects of sexual activity


Department of Cardiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Shantou University Medical College, Guangdong, China

Correspondence Address:
X Tan
Department of Cardiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Shantou University Medical College, Guangdong, China

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


PMID: 20090128

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Sexuality is a major way of intimacy in human being and it is very important in gender relationship, contributing to over all health. However, since association between sexual activity and sudden death determined by forensic autopsies related to cardiac or cerebral causes has been reported, some people with heart disease often abstain from sexual activity that could affect the quality of life. It is therefore important to learn the physical demand of sexual activity and the risk it may trigger. For decades, the cardiologists have conducted observational studies and clinical trials on healthy volunteers or patients. The most common indices responding to cardiovascular risks of sexuality were variances of blood pressure (BP) and heart rate (HR), monitored by ambulatory blood pressure and dynamic electrocardiogram recording. BP and HR increase during the coitus just briefly and quickly recover to baseline level. Peak coital BP occurred at onset of plateau phase and quickly decreased, instead of emerged at orgasm as most people supposed. The metabolic equivalent of energy expenditure during the orgasm was relatively modest when compared with other physical exertion such as cycling. Epidemiological studies have suggested that sexual activity has favorable effect on health in the long term. This review summarizes and discusses the advances in the researches dealing with cardiovascular effects of sexual activity to better inform the cardiac patients.


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