Abstract 17775: Progress in Cost Effective Complete Screening of Athletes
Sudden death among young athletes is an uncommon but devastating international problem. Much has been written about the problem, and it is recognized that adding an ECG and follow up echocardiogram to a complete history and physical examination is able to detect a much higher percentage of affected athletes. In an Italian study, this approach reduced sudden death among athletes by 90%. Cost estimates of complete screening of athletes in the United States range from $126 Million to nearly $2 Billion. Over the past several years our efforts have been directed toward complete screening of a large school district and in finding a less costly alternative. Cypress Fairbanks ISD is in suburban Houston and has over 100,000 students. We have performed ECG's on all willing student-athletes entering the 9th grade, 4967 over the past two years. All abnormal ECG's resulted in either a consultation, echocardiogram, or usually both. 357 or 7.19% of the ECG's were abnormal, and after further screening, only 132 had any abnormality. Only 13 had serious abnormality and were kept from further participaton. One had non-compaction cardiomyopathy and underwent transplantation. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy was found in 3 and one recieved a defibrillator. We also found one Ebstein's anomaly, two coarctations, 18 moderate or greater pulmonary hypertensives, 4 bicuspid aortic valves, and 12 WPW's. Our process was extremely inexpensive and is being expanded to other districts this summer. We expect to make this process available widely in the near future and nationally within 5 years. We have been contacted by representatives of 13 foreign countries and believe that our model would suit most of them.
- © 2010 by American Heart Association, Inc.