Page 151 - Athletic Health Handbook
P. 151
TEAM PHYSICIAN’S CORNER

SUDDEN CARDIAC DEATH
AND AUTOMATIC EXTERNAL
DEFIBRILLATORS

RICHARD G. LEVINE, MD SHOULD AUTOMATIC EXTERNAL DEFIBRIL-
LATORS BE AVAILABLE for use at organized sporting events?
ANDREW M. TUCKER, MD
To answer this question we must first look at the incidence of on-field
BARRY P. BODEN, MD cardiac related events and then the usefulness of this device in the treatment
Union Memorial Sports Medicine of these athletes.
Baltimore, Maryland
The Orthopaedic Center The overall risk of sudden cardiac death (SCD) during exercise is low.
Rockville, Maryland The incidence of SCD in U.S. high school and college athletes is estimated
to be one in 180,000 per year with predominance in males (VanCamp).
Estimates from various reports for older individuals range from 1:15,000
per year in joggers to 1:50,000 in marathon participants (Siscovick).

SCD in the realm of athletics can be thought of as occurring in two
different populations based on the age of the athlete. Atherosclerotic
coronary artery disease accounts for 80 percent of SCD in athletes older

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