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Heart Watch Blog: Dangerous Heart Condition In Young Athletes

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Dec 16, 2005

Dangerous Heart Condition In Young Athletes

Dangerous Heart Condition In Young Athletes
If they weren't high-profile sports stars, there are probabilities that no one would notice them dying. But young athletes do die every year. Though the number is low, the death of a young, talented, teenager or college student astonishes the community and leaves friends and family brokenhearted.

A Johns Hopkins study has presented the most comprehensive explanation of people most likely to build up a relatively rare heart condition, called arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasia (ARVD), known to be among the top causes of sudden cardiac death among young athletes.

The symptoms of ARVD include irregular heartbeat and the presence of excess amounts of fatty tissue in the heart's right ventricle. Consequently, the abnormal and often weakened and scarred right ventricle significantly increases the risk of harmful ventricular arrhythmias and possible sudden cardiac death.

According to senior study investigator and cardiac electrophysiologist Hugh Calkins, M.D., "physicians should be on the lookout for its early signs and symptoms as it is an important cause of sudden cardiac death in healthy young individuals.

Calkins, a professor of medicine and pediatrics at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and its Heart Institute, notes that the disease often hits people who are relatively young and that symptoms like palpitation and dizziness may appear up to 15 years before diagnosis.

Diagnoses of ARVD depends on a four-point scale, and up to 10 cardiac tests are compulsory to confirm a diagnosis. Electrocardiograms and echocardiograms are performed to verify the origins of arrhythmia, and MRI tests are done to confirm the buildup of fat and fibrous tissue in the right ventricle,


Daniel      



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Heart disease
About 13 million Americans (about 7 percent of the total population) suffer from coronary artery disease. Coronary artery disease is the leading cause of death in American men and women amounting a staggering 20 percent of all causes of death. About half of all deaths related to cardiovascular diseases occur from coronary artery disease. Through this heart watch blog we will have our humble contribution towards making men and women aware of the risks of heart diseases.

Heart Watch Blog: Dangerous Heart Condition In Young Athletes

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