As the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues, many have begun to examine the effects the virus has on the heart, especially in athletes.
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During his press briefing on Thursday, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine welcomed Dr. Curt Daniels of Ohio State to discuss the topic.
Based on what he has observed, Dr. Daniels said that 20 percent of hospitalized coronavirus patients may have cardiac involvement. Less information, however, is known about patients who haven't been hospitalized by the virus.
It's noteworthy that the condition known as myocarditis -- an inflammation of the heart muscle -- has been discovered in athletes. Per Daniels, myocarditis has been found in 10-13 percent of the athletes he has observed who have also tested positive for the coronavirus.
According to Daniels, this is worth monitoring, as myocarditis is one of the causes of sudden cardiac death registries with athletes. Training and competition can make such patients vulnerable due to elevated heart rates.
"We know that being an athlete and having high intense competition and training probably induces a higher level of arrhythmia burning -- the exciting of the heart, the stressing of the heart," Dr. Daniels said. "And if the heart is vulnerable with inflammation, there's a risk of a dangerous heart rate problem.
"Anybody who's at a high level of exercise could be at risk."
Per Dr. Daniels, anyone with early viral coronavirus symptoms should rest and continue to monitor cardiac symptoms, including shortness of breath, palpitations. When increasing exercise activities, those should do so gradually.