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  • Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

    I read in the front page article that Ron Clarke has an artificial heart...can anyone confirm that?...never heard that before and it seems a bit out of sinc for someone who should have an amazingly strong heart...unless he has hereditary issues.

  • #2
    Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

    I hadn't heard that either (maybe they mean a valve). Odd that he didn't have an opportunity for a transplant rather than an AH? I checked Clarke's wiki - no mention. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ron_Clarke

    I'm not surprised he focused on Mexico City, though I wonder how accurate his conclusion is?

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    • #3
      Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

      I remember that he had surgery on a leaky valve, years after he retired from racing.

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      • #4
        Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

        Weirdly you asked an almost identical question 5 years ago!

        viewtopic.php?p=527636

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        • #5
          Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

          Originally posted by Friar

          I'm not surprised he focused on Mexico City, though I wonder how accurate his conclusion is?
          I'm not sure how accurate his conclusion is, but it's definitely possible. On rare occasions extreme exertion can cause rupture of the cord-like tendons that connect muscles in the heart to the mitral valve, and if a tendon ruptures, the mitral valve will no longer close properly. Less oxygen at high altitudes such as in Mexico City would require the heart to work harder than it would at lower altitudes, which could increase the risk of tendon rupture and the resulting mitral valve damage. (It's also possible that he may have had a pre-existing condition or genetic defect that could have made the tendon(s) more susceptible to rupture under extreme conditions such as in the Mexico City race.)

          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18782707

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          • #6
            Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

            Originally posted by lovetorun
            I read in the front page article that Ron Clarke has an artificial heart...can anyone confirm that?...never heard that before and it seems a bit out of sinc for someone who should have an amazingly strong heart...unless he has hereditary issues.
            I would bet this is an artificial heart valve, which is not that uncommon, and can be hereditary. One of my partners, the healthiest guy in our group, does triathlons, marathons, had to have one about 3 years ago after they discovered a congenital valve problem.

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            • #7
              Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

              Originally posted by AS
              Weirdly you asked an almost identical question 5 years ago!

              viewtopic.php?p=527636
              Yikes...I did. However this time it was artificial heart, not just a defective valve.

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              • #8
                Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

                This just shows how difficult it is to put one over on these boards! The accountability factor is second to none.
                "Who's Kidding Who?"

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                • #9
                  Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

                  Here are Clarke's own words in an interview from March, 2013.

                  http://micromiraclesmatter.com/what-leg ... much-more/

                  Q: Do you suffer from any ongoing injuries?

                  A: In Mexico, I had run very carefully for 23 of the 25 laps and felt terrific. When Temu & Wolde started to wind it up about 600m to go, I felt well enough to think I could win because I knew I could outsprint both of them. Within 100 metres of feeling so well suddenly the ‘big bear’ jumped on my back, my legs went heavy, my arms felt like lead weights, and suddenly, with a lap to go, my mission went from how I was going to win it to staying on my feet for just the one more lap (I think I ran it in about 90-odd seconds). I knew I had to get to the finish line but try as I could down the straight it kept on getting further away. When I finally made it, I went to put my hands on my knees as I always did, and next I knew I was on the ground with an oxygen mask over my face and Brian Corrigan, our team doctor and one of my very good friends, crying and muttering .. “the bastards….the bastards” over and over again. I tried to speak but my tongue was so swollen I couldn’t make a sound. Incidentally it was my heart (my mitral valve) that was damaged, not my lungs, and of course, this made a huge difference when I was competing after 1968, and when I needed open heart surgery to replace it.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

                    He probably had mitro valve prolapse and had it replaced. It's something I have, but without symptoms other than a murmur. Should I develop symptoms: shortness of breath, extreme fatigue, chest pains, I can have it replaced. So far 8 years since diagnosis and no symptoms.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Ron Clarke has an artificial heart?

                      Originally posted by jeremyp
                      He probably had mitro valve prolapse and had it replaced. It's something I have, but without symptoms other than a murmur. Should I develop symptoms: shortness of breath, extreme fatigue, chest pains, I can have it replaced. So far 8 years since diagnosis and no symptoms.
                      Dr Jay will know better but I would bet on bicuspid aortic valve. Mitral valve prolapse more common in women and not usually as symptomatic. My uber-healthy partner had bicuspid aortic valve that finally started giving him symptoms.

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