Sex rarely makes heart stop, study shows

Men more at risk of rare heart attack after sex claims Study

Research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2017 contradicts a TV and movie myth that having sex is a common trigger for myocardial infarction or cardiac arrest. The patients who did were more likely to be male, middle-aged, black and have a history of cardiovascular disease, according to the ACC.

"People will ask their doctors if sex increases their risk of sudden death, and we've never had the answer before because there never was a study", said Chugh, the study's senior author and a highly respected expert on sudden cardiac arrest.

In their research, they found that from 4,557 sudden cardiac arrest, around 34 was that which happens within an hour of sex, and 32 of them was men.

The new findings are part of a 16-year study of heart risk factors involving about a million people living in and around Portland.

One in 100 cases of cardiac arrest in men was associated with sexual activity, compared with one in 1000 cases in women.

It is known sex may trigger heart attacks. Black men are more at risk than other populations, accounting for 19 percent of sex-related cardiac arrest.

This was slightly higher than the 27 per cent of non-sex triggered heart attacks, the difference was not statistically significant and those individuals might have died alone.

The study, led by Dr. Aapo Aro, of Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute in Los Angeles, may put some minds at ease about the risks of sex.

Survival often depends on how quickly patients receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), or chest compressions, which can help restore circulation and maintain blood flow to vital organs.

The researchers noted that sudden cardiac arrest kills more than 300,000 people in the US every year and physical activity, particularly when the person is not accustomed to it, is linked to a higher risk of the condition.

Even though sudden cardiac arrest during sexual activity was witnessed by a partner, bystander CPR was performed in only one-third of the cases. Almost 20 percent of people survived in sex-related cases, compared to only about 13 percent survival odds for other patients.

There's one silver lining for people who have a cardiac arrest from sex - they're nearly twice as likely to survive, Chugh said.

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