Don't dismiss sex after heart attack


After suffering a heart attack it stands to reason you're going to be cautious when it comes to any vigorous activity. But while you shun the gym as you recover, saying no to a bit of nooky is unnecessary say experts.

German researchers from the University of Ulm found that sex carries no greater risk of triggering another heart attack than climbing stairs or going for a brisk walk.

In fact they say doing any physical activity following a heart attack is safe, and they encourage taking part.

'It seems very unlikely that sexual activity is a relevant trigger of heart attacks'

Looking at 536 heart attack survivors aged between 30 and 70, the team tracked their health and any further heart problems. Any correlation between sex and the original heart attack was also noted. Only 0.7 per cent had had sex an hour before they suffered the medical condition and almost 80 per cent had not sex for at least 24 hours.

Following the group for ten years, 100 heart attacks, strokes and other cardiac problems did occur, but no link was found between the episodes and sexual activity.

"Based on our data, it seems very unlikely that sexual activity is a relevant trigger of heart attacks," study author Dietrich Rothenbacher wrote in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

"Less than half of men and less than a third of women are getting information about sexual activity after a heart attack from their doctors. It is important to reassure patients that they need not be worried and should resume their usual sexual activity."

However, some medicines used in the aftermath of a heart attack can cause impotence.

The British Heart Foundation corroborate this latest research and advises patients to start having sex as soon as they feel well enough, which is normally four to six weeks after the heart attack.

© Cover Media

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