Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

French Tour de France cyclists live longer than their non-cyclist countrymen

Date:
September 3, 2013
Source:
European Society of Cardiology
Summary:
French participants in the Tour de France between 1947 and 2012 lived longer than their same-age French counterparts according to the results of a study marking the centenary of the race this year.

The Netherlands -- French participants in the Tour de France between 1947-2012 lived longer than their same-age French counterparts according to the results of a study marking the centenary of the race this year.

"In the context of recent concerns regarding performance-enhancing techniques and the potential negative health effects of excessive high-level physical activity, data on the long-term outcomes and causes of death in elite endurance cyclists is of particular interest," said Xavier Jouven, MD, PhD, from the Sudden Death Expertise Center in Paris, France.

"Although our results are reassuring to some extent, since no death has been observed since 1990, we have to remain careful since we cannot directly assess the potential harmfulness of doping through our analyses and results."

The study assessed 786 French cyclists who participated at least once in the Tour de France between 1947 and 2012, and compared them to the general French male population of the same age.

The cyclists had participated in a median of 2.5 Tour de France races and were followed for a median of 37.4 years. Their median age at the first race was 25 years.

A standardized mortality ratio (SMR) was calculated based on the actual death rate of the cyclists compared to the death rate in the age-matched French population according to the Human Mortality Database.

An SMR lower than 1 indicates the cyclists had a lower mortality rate than the general population, whereas an SMR greater than 1 indicates higher mortality.

The study found that of the 786 cyclists, 208 (26%) had died by September 01, 2012 -- an SMR of 0.59 and a mortality rate that is 41% lower than the general population, said Dr. Jouven.

The two main causes of death for the cyclists were neoplasms (32.2%), and cardiovascular diseases (29%), both occurring less frequently than in the general public (SMRs of 0.56 and 0.67 respectively).

Among cancers, the 3 main diagnoses were digestive (35%), lung (22%), and prostate (7%).

For the third highest cause of death (15.8%), classified as "external" (mostly trauma-related) the SMR was 1.06 indicating about the same rate as in the general public.

Other causes of death included infectious diseases (2.2%), endocrine and nutritional diseases (2.2%), neurological (2.2%), digestive system diseases (2.2%), and genitourinary disease (1.1%).

The cyclists' SMR was consistent across different periods of participation, corresponding to the reported or suspected use of cocaine and amphetamines (1947-1970), androgens and anabolic steroids (1971-1990) and growth hormone and erythropoietin (1991-2012), said Dr. Jouven.

The SMRs were also consistent across all age groups, except for the age-group younger than 30 years in whom a non-significantly higher death rate was observed (SMR 1.65) compared to the general population.

"A particularly high frequency of traffic or race accident deaths were seen in this age-group," he said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Society of Cardiology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Society of Cardiology. "French Tour de France cyclists live longer than their non-cyclist countrymen." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 September 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130903091546.htm>.
European Society of Cardiology. (2013, September 3). French Tour de France cyclists live longer than their non-cyclist countrymen. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 15, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130903091546.htm
European Society of Cardiology. "French Tour de France cyclists live longer than their non-cyclist countrymen." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/09/130903091546.htm (accessed September 15, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 15, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Respiratory Virus Spreads To Northeast, Now In 21 States

Newsy (Sep. 14, 2014) — The respiratory virus Enterovirus D68, which targets children, has spread from the Midwest to 21 states. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) — A U.K. survey found that journalists consumed the most amount of coffee, but that's only the tip of the coffee-related statistics iceberg. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contagious Respiratory Illness Continues to Spread Across U.S.

Contagious Respiratory Illness Continues to Spread Across U.S.

Reuters - US Online Video (Sep. 12, 2014) — Hundreds of children in several states have been stricken by a serious respiratory illness that is spreading across the U.S. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Batters Sierra Leone Economy Too

Ebola Batters Sierra Leone Economy Too

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 12, 2014) — The World Health Organisation warns that local health workers in West Africa can't keep up with Ebola - and among those countries hardest hit by the outbreak, the economic damage is coming into focus, too. As David Pollard reports, Sierra Leone admits that growth in one of the poorest economies in the region is taking a beating. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:  

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile iPhone Android Web
    Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins