Health Matters: Screening Your Child's Heart
Football, baseball, and basketball are just a few sports kids enjoy throughout adolescence. But before they start to play, doctors recommend children have their heart health checked in addition to their yearly physical.
Carrie Dorsch, a cardiovascular screening coordinator with Golisano Children’s Hospital, says pediatric heart disease can often go undetected and lead to sudden cardiac death. “The EKG screening that we are offering is offered for the middle school to high school ages. Often times children, mainly athletes who play sports they’re not showing any signs or symptoms of heart disease. The EKG is a great tool to use. It’s a good way for us to evaluate their risk for cardiovascular disease.”
The EKG screening takes about ten minutes. Health experts hook the EKG electrodes to the child’s body and monitor their heart. The EKG shows how fast the heart is beating, the heart’s rhythm, and the timing of the heart’s electrical signals.
“We don’t want this screening to replace their yearly physical but it’s a great tool that we are offering and it’s in addition to their physical just to make sure they’re not at risk when they’re on the field playing their sport,” said Dorsch.
Once the test is complete, a pediatric cardiologist will read the results. “If the screening does come back abnormal we recommend that the child takes the results to their primary care physician and they will be referred then for any follow up testing,” recommended Dorsch.
Studies show combining an EKG test to a child’s physical exam increases the likelihood of detecting conditions that could lead to sudden cardiac arrest.
Story Credit: http://www.nbc-2.com/story/35228111/health-matters-screening-your-childs-heart