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Dear Dr Miriam.

Byline: Miriam Stoppard

My brother has been told he has quite a slow pulse, averaging, 39-45 BPM.

What does this mean? He is 32 years old and is quite active.

Dr Miriam says: The average pulse rate in a healthy person is 72 beats in a minute but a slow pulse is generally considered to be very healthy indeed. This is because the heart is working very efficiently.

A slow pulse means that the heart can pump large quantities of blood in a relatively short time, which signifies both healthy heart muscle and a good supply of oxygen through coronary arteries, keeping the heart healthy. No danger of a coronary thrombosis there!

People who stay physically fit usually have a slower pulse rate than people who are unfit.

Exercising hard trains the heart muscle to work hard, too, and it can do this best by slowing down.

So, if your brother is an athlete or runs marathons that would account for his slow heartbeat.
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Title Annotation:Features; Opinion, Column
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 13, 2012
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