Effect of endurance training for 8 weeks on the cross-sectional area of inferior vena cava in humans

Motohiko Miyachi*, Mitsuharu Okutsu, Hidehiro Nakahara, Takeshi Saitoh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


A study was conducted to determine non-invasively the effects of endurance training on the size of the inferior vena cava in humans. Twelve healthy male subjects were assigned to either an exercise-trained group (ET, n=7) or a sedentary control group (S, n=5). The ET group underwent cycle-endurance training for 8 weeks (80%V̇o2max, 40min/day, 4 days/week). The S group led normal lives during the 8-week period. Before and after the training period, cross-sectional areas (CSA) of the inferior vena cava and the ascending and abdominal aorta were measured by echography. The CSA of the inferior vena cava after training was significantly larger than that before training in the ET group. There was no significant difference in the S group. These results indicate that the inferior vena cava can be morphologically altered as an adaptive response to endurance training. We consider that this adaptation partly contributes to the improvement in the efficiency of venous return from exercising muscles to the heart. Although the present training also increased the CSA of the aorta, the degree of change was smaller than that seen in the inferior vena cava, implying that the factors of adaptation and adaptability to endurance training in the inferior vena cava differ from those in the aorta.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-98
Number of pages8
Journaljapanese journal of physical fitness and sports medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999 Feb
Externally publishedYes


  • Circulation
  • Morphometry
  • Training
  • Ultrasonography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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