By LAURAN NEERGAARD, Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — Doctors tell people with a heart-zapping device in their chests to give up intense sports like basketball and soccer in favor of golf or bowling. But lots of patients ignore that advice — and now new research is challenging it.
Specialists at Yale University tracked what happened to 372 athletes who kept at high school, college or community sports despite having a defibrillator surgically implanted in their chests. The lifesaving device fires shocks when it detects that a dangerous irregular heartbeat is forming.
The implants did fire more often when people were physically active than when they rested. But the researchers concluded that the implants did their job despite the physical duress — suggesting vigorous exercise may be safe for many patients after all.
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