Harvard Health Letter

Sex after heart attack

The American Heart Association says it's safe.

For the first time ever, the American Heart Association (AHA) is weighing in on a very personal subject: sexual activity. The organization has issued a scientific statement noting that sex is safe for the majority of heart disease patients and that patients should discuss the subject with their doctors.

"The AHA statement on sexual activity and heart disease is really a big step forward in medicine," says Dr. Deepak Bhatt, an interventional cardiologist and associate professor at Harvard Medical School. "Patients with heart disease often have questions about sexual activity and it is time to start discussing those issues openly."

It's been a tricky subject. While exercise has been an accepted way to help treat heart patients for years, many heart patients have been concerned about resuming sexual relations because of the strain it may put on their heart or any cardiac devices.

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