Dodgy heart? Then don't ride the roller coaster 

Sep 06 (Reuters) - People with known heart problems should not take roller-coaster rides and theme parks should consider having defibrillators on hand in case riders are taken ill, German doctors said on Monday. 

A study of 55 individuals taking a two-minute roller-coaster ride found they experienced a sharp rise in heart rates, comparable to severe short-term physical exercise, with women's heart rates increasing more than men's. 

Dr Juergen Kuschyk of Mannheim's University Hospital and colleagues told the World Congress of Cardiology that the increase in heart rates was big enough to trigger arrhythmia problems in people with heart disease. 

Many rides already carry warnings about the risks for people with heart conditions or back problems, but deaths still sometimes occur. 

The risk is sufficiently great that experts should investigate the need for installing automatic external defibrillators, which can administer an   electric shock to the heart in order to re-establish a normal heartbeat, Kuschyk said.

 

Publish Date: September, 2006