Thursday, February 26, 2009

American Heart Association Media Advisory: CDC Says Arthritis Pain May Keep People with Heart Disease Physically Inactive

/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report showing that arthritis may create an additional barrier to using physical activity to help people manage their heart disease. Adults with both heart disease and arthritis are significantly more likely to be physically inactive than those with heart disease alone, the study said.

The study in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), found that arthritis is common among those having heart disease. Approximately 57 percent of adults with heart disease have arthritis.

The American Heart Association has long recommended physical activity for both prevention of and recovery from heart disease. The association supports the national Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans issued by Health and Human Services in 2008, which specify that people with chronic conditions may require an activity plan that integrates preventive and therapeutic recommendations. This includes those adults with arthritis.

The recommendations specify that adults with osteoarthritis should get regular physical activity to lower their risk of getting other chronic diseases such as heart disease or type 2 diabetes and to help maintain body weight. People with osteoarthritis should match the type and amount of physical activity to their abilities and the severity of their condition. Most people can usually do moderate-intensity activity for 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) a week or more, and may choose to be active three to five days a week for 30 to 60 minutes per episode. For more information on the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, visit:

The American Heart Association encourages physical activity among all Americans to help prevent heart disease and combat obesity, and focuses on walking because it's an activity that almost everyone can do.

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