HealthDay News — Sleep deprivation while working 24-hour shifts can affect heart function, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America, held from November 27 to December 2 in Chicago.

The study included 20 healthy radiologists with an average age of 31.6 years. Using cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging with strain analysis, the participants’ heart function was evaluated before and after a 24-hour shift in which they got an average of three hours of sleep. 

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The researchers found that after the shift, the participants showed significant changes in blood pressure and heart rate, along with significant increases in levels of thyroid stimulating hormone, thyroid hormones FT3 and FT4, and cortisol.

“These findings may help us better understand how workload and shift duration affect public health,” lead researcher Daniel Kuetting, MD, from the department of diagnostic and interventional radiology at the University of Bonn in Germany, said in a statement.

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