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  • weight lifting

    [weight lifting]

    Author: vickie (---.jacksonville.net)

    Date: 11-26-01 13:17

    I have HOCM. I have always read that weight lifting is contraindicated in people with HOCM. I am now in a cardiac rehab program where the majority of the patients have had MI's or bypass surgery and weights are included with aerobic exercise. I have not had surgery. The rehab coordinator asked me what the medical reason was for HOCM patients to not use weights and I was unable to answer her question. Can you tell me why? Thanks.

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    [Re: weight lifting]

    Author: Tim (---.westgroup.com)

    Date: 11-30-01 18:46

    Hi Vickie:

    First of all, I'm not a doctor, but I am a person with IHSS (diagnosed about 10 years ago). Just to give some background and relevance: I'm 33; my course of treatment is 25mg of atenolol once a day; I have not had a heart attack or otherwise been hospitalized for my condition. My treatment seems to be more or less effective; some days are better than others, but I am by no means moderately or seriously debilitated by this disorder.

    I myself am puzzled as you are in regard to weightlifting. The doctor who diagnosed me gave me a rather bleak vision of the life I should expect as a person who has IHSS. I was told about the only forms of exercise I could participate in were walking, swimming, and riding a bicycle. She strongly recommended I exercise additional caution in extreme temperatures (hot or cold) and all but insisted I get a disabled parking permit.

    I changed doctors when I moved out west and after a couple years I felt the need to do something about my health and fitness and general opinion of my body. I wanted to join a gym and try to lose the fat (5'11", 218 lbs.) and gain some muscle mass. The personal trainer I hired needed written permission from the doctor, so the doctor assessed my condition independently (Holter monitor, stress echocardiogram w/doppler). He felt there would not be a problem and placed no restrictions on me with the stipulation that I should always be aware of how I felt and to stop immediately at any sign of a problem.

    I've been going to the gym regularly and have thus far not experienced any problems. I don't have the body of Schwarzenegger, but I'm definitely working towards something realistic that will look and feel good to me.

    Nobody has ever really quite explained to me why weightlifting is contraindicated in HOCM patients, but given what I know of the disorder, I would think it simply comes down to the fact that weightlifting stresses an already stressed heart. My doctor assessed me and my relative health and felt there was no need for heavy restrictions as long as I exercised vigilance and caution in my workout routine. That won't necessarily be the case for someone else with HOCM depending on various factors, I would think: age, relative health, degree to which HOCM affects his/her life, treatment, etc.

    I'm reading between the lines of your post, so I apologize if I'm making some erroneous assumptions here, but I gather your rehab coordinator was thinking, "If these bypass patients can use weights, why can't Vickie?" Just because patients who have had bypass surgery are lifting weights as part of their rehabilitation doesn't necessarily mean it's good for someone who has HOCM. I would think comparing the situation of a bypass patient with that of one who has HOCM is like comparing apples and oranges. What does >your< doctor have to say on the subject?

    I don't know if this helps any, but I hope this has been of some use.

    Tim

    San Francisco, CA

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    [Re: weight lifting]

    Author: Dave (---.proxy.aol.com)

    Date: 12-07-01 23:28

    Vickie,

    Tim was right about the reasons to restrict the stress on your heart. It is because is you have HCM and are symptomatic, your heart is already not functioning as efficiently as most other people. "It is stressed." The muscle is already probably working harder than it should. That's why they put us on the meds to relax the rate and intensitity of our heart contractions. I'm male, 38 and just had an ICD implanted because of arythmias. My cardiologist told me lifting for muscle tone was fine, just no and I repeat "No" heavy lifting. In other words, low weight, lots of reps- fine. No heavy stuff. My heart already doesn't have enough blood flow to feed the existing muscle, therefore don't tax it any more.

    Before you do anything, make sure you talk to your Doctor.

    Hope you are doing well.

    Dave

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    [Re: weight lifting]

    Author: Todd (141.238.15.---)

    Date: 04-30-02 13:21

    I'm very new to this and i've had the same questions. The one thing that makes me different is that weightlifting is what got me here. I'm a 26 year old competitive bodybuilder and was just diagnosed with cm with an EF of 25%. I have a lot more tests to have done so im not sure what my coarse of action is going to be but the one thing im sure of is that my whole lifestyle is going to change. My doc told me that i could still train but in his words "just not as heavy". if that isnt vague.
    NOTE: This is a post from the previous forum message board.

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