Sudden cardiac death in athletes is a relatively rare event, but due to the increasing number of individuals practicing high-performance sports, in absolute terms, it has become an important issue to be addressed. Since etiologies are many and the occurrence is rare, tracing the ideal preparticipation screening program is challenging. So far, as screening tools, a comprehensive clinical evaluation and a simple 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) seem to be the most cost-effective strategy. Recent technological advances came to significantly help as second-line investigation tools, especially the cardiac magnetic resonance, which allows for a more detailed ventricular evaluation, cardiac tissue characterization, and eliminates the poor acoustic window problem. This article aims to review all aspects related to sudden cardiac death in athletes, beginning with definitions and epidemiology, passing through etiology and clinical characteristics, then finishing with a discussion about the best ambulatory investigational approach.
Kochi AN, Vettor G, Dessanai MA, Pizzamiglio F, Tondo C. Sudden Cardiac Death in Athletes: From the Basics to the Practical Work-Up. Medicina (Kaunas) 2021 Feb 14;57(2):168.doi: 10.3390/medicina57020168