The following are the facts concerning screening for children
to prevent sudden cardiac death
- 1) Screening reduces the risk of sudden death in sports and in daily activities overall.
- 2) No screening system eliminates the risk of sudden death.
- 3) Common sense plays a role in prevention – avoid dehydration – avoid aggressive exercise in extremes of heat, especially when one has not acclimated to the higher temperature. (It can take up to five weeks of exposure to warmer weather.)
- 4) The reduction of sudden death in sports and sudden death in general for children involves education for pediatricians, families, schools and government in a variety of areas.
- 5) Our screening program will identify diseases that are known to cause sudden death in children.
The purpose of this screening is to identify as many high-risk abnormalities as possible. This does not exclude the possibility of congenital heart disease, mild Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy or even the future development of Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. When applied to large groups, it will reduce the risk, but not eliminate the risk of sudden death. Healthy diet, lifestyle and regular exercise can also help reduce the risk. The presence of a heart murmur or cardiac symptoms would require a full cardiac evaluation. Should the child develop any cardiac symptoms during sports participation, the child should be restricted from the activity and undergo a full cardiac evaluation.
For further information, please visit:
American Heart Association