Date of Award

Spring 2007

Document Type

Thesis

Department

Education

Abstract

The sudden death of young athletes is unexpected and disturbing to all involved (Courson & Drezner, 2006). Recently, there was a local, young, active male who was a victim of this genetic heart flaw. Sudden cardiac death is defined as one that is unexpected, nontraumatic, and occurs instantaneously without an abrupt change in one’s previous clinical state (O’Connor, Kugler & Oriscello, 2001). The general population of athletes is truly at a low risk for ever being a young victim of such a catastrophic disorder, however, the unpredictability of this disorder sets it apart from any other clinical concern (Maron, 2003). Sudden cardiac arrest claims approximately 1000 persons per day. In response, the AHA (American Heart Association) reported survival rates of sudden cardiac arrest with resuscitation at 4% to 11%, and the AHA goal for survival is 30%. Athletes daily exert their bodies to the maximum, and have no reservations about their health state. Athletes, coaches, parents, and spectators need to be well versed in the accompanying parts of this disease. A lack of knowledge by an individual truly may be the difference between a saved life and the loss of one.

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