Forest Johnston 0

Make Echocardiogram Apart of Annual Physical Exams

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Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or HCM, is the leading cause ofsudden cardiac death(SCD) in young athletes. HCM is frequently asymptomatic until SCD, and thus its prevention requires screening. Screening by medical history and physical exam are ineffective, indicating heart abnormalities in only 3% of patients who subsequently suffered SCD. However, HCM can be detected with 80%+ accuracy byechocardiograms, which may be combined with pre-screening byelectrocardiograms(ECGs). Routine cardiac screening of athletes has been implemented in Italy since the 1970s, and has resulted in an 89% drop in cases of SCD among screened athletes. Make echocardiograms apart of routine physicals.

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