Arterial pathology of the upper limb in athletes

Author: Ioana Para1, Mira Florea2, Teodora Alexescu1, Lorena Ciumarnean1, Nicoleta Leach1, Adriana Albu3


“Iuliu Hațieganu” University of Medicine and Pharmacy Cluj-Napoca

14th Medical Clinic

2Department of Community Medicine

32nd Medical Clinic


Sports activities, at any level, expose athletes to high physical strain. Musculoskeletal lesions are the most frequent cause of pain or functional impotence in athletes. In addition to musculoskeletal lesions, they can develop traumatic or non-traumatic vascular disease, arterial or venous.

The incidence of vascular involvement in athletes is increasing, especially in sports characterized by repetitive movements or in which high speed collision occurs. Unfortunately, vascular disease in athletes is frequently overlooked.

Delayed diagnosis may have serious consequences on both the affected limb, resulting in loss of mobility or even amputation, and subsequent sports activity, leading to withdrawal from sport.

In this paper, we focused on the non-traumatic arterial pathology of the upper limb in athletes, presenting the symptoms and red flags that should be taken into consideration by the doctor, as well as diagnostic methods. We also described the treatment and rehabilitation methods required for resumption of sports activity.

Keywords: athletes, physical exercise, arterial involvement, upper limb arteries

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