A Comparison of Sympathetic Neural and Endothelial Vasoreactivity of Brachial Artery in Elite Weightlifters with a Sedentary Age-Matched Control Group

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assistant Professor, Department of physical education and sport sciences, Faculty of Humanities, Ardabil Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ardabil, Iran.

2 Associated Professor, Department of physical education and sport sciences, Faculty of education sciences and psychology, University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Ardabil, Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Department of physical education and sport sciences, Faculty of education sciences and psychology, University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Ardabil, Iran


The aim of the present study was to compare the sympathetic neural and
endothelial responses of brachial artery to vasodilatory and constrictor
stimuli in elite weightlifters and a sedentary age-matched control group. 7
elite weightlifters (age 23.5±2.2 yrs) and 8 sedentary healthy subjects (age
24.3±2.12 yrs) voluntarily participated in this study. High-resolution
Doppler ultrasound was used to determine brachial artery diameters at rest,
following 5 minutes of forearm occlusion [Flow Mediated Dilation (FMD)]
and during acute sympathetic stimulation [cold pressure test (CPT)].
Vasoreactivity responses were calculated from the vasodilatory and
constrictor peak changes in artery diameter. The acquired data were analyzed
using independent t test and repeated measures method at P≤0.05. Brachial
artery diameters in baseline [mean differences, 0.5 mm (P=0.001)], peak
vasodilation [mean differences, 0.57 mm (P=0.002)] and peak constriction
[mean differences, 0.498 mm (P=0.003)] were significantly greater in
weightlifters than control group. However, no significant difference was
observed in %FMD, %CPT and vascular operating range (VOR) between
weightlifters and age-matched control group (P≤0.05). The present study
indicated that the function of brachial artery is not necessarily enhanced in
elite weightlifters. However, elite weightlifters had larger brachial artery
diameter than age-matched healthy control subjects.


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