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    Apnea after exercise may evoke a neurally mediated conflict that may affect apneic time and create a cardiovascular strain. The physiological responses, induced by apnea with face immersion in cold water (10 °C), after a 3-min exercise bout, at 85% of VO2max,were examined in 10 swimmers. A pre-selected 40-s apnea, completed after rest (AAR), could not be met after exercise (AAE), and was terminated with an agonal gasp reflex, and a reduction of apneic time, by 75%. Bradycardia was evident with immersion after both, 40-s of AAR and after AAE (P<0.05). The dramatic elevation of, systolic pressure and pulse pressure, after AAE, were indicative of cardiovascular stress. Blood pressure after exercise without apnea was not equally elevated. The activation of neurally opposing functions as those elicited by the diving reflex after high intensity exercise may create an autonomic conflict possibly related to oxygen-conserving reflexes stimulated by the trigeminal nerve, and those elicited by exercise. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.


    Sylvia Konstantinidou, Helen Soultanakis. Cardiorespiratory responses and reduced apneic time to cold-water face immersion after high intensity exercise. Respiratory physiology & neurobiology. 2016 Jan;220:33-9

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    PMID: 26343750

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