High School Sports Center

Heat, Heart, Health…. Bringing the Awareness

by HSSC | Posted on Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

Heat, Heart, Health…. Bringing the Awareness By: Eileen Spengler, RCS, CRS, CPI Founder – Heart of a Legend Foundation

Doctor holding heart

It’s about that time again with the change in seasons and becoming more active.  Sports physicals are beginning to take place and now we all realize it’s time to get back in shape an get outside to begin working off some of those extra pounds.  Our young athletes are getting back into the mindset of working out, training and preparing for their sport of choice.  With all the above being said we just have to keep in mind the heat, our heart and overall health while working out and conditioning.  An athlete can develop a heat illness which usually occurs after several hours of exertion and excessive sweating this will lead to dehydration and then to an electrolyte imbalance. This can add to the amount of stress on the heart and the athlete may become quite ill or worse case even death may occur.  Reminding our young athletes to hydrate, rest in between and not over-do it is great advice. But also knowing that we are healthy enough for exercise is also just as important.  Receiving a heart screening to be sure there isn’t an underlying condition should always be recommended.  There is a term called Enlarged Heart, which puts an athlete at risk for rhythm disturbances.  This type of heart usually doesn’t show any symptoms and typically is not diagnosed until screenings are performed.  But again, this type of pathology and then adding dehydration could be a risk.  Our coaches, teachers, parents and teammates need to be educated on heart health and a response plan put into action.  With more education and faster reaction time we may be able to save more lives.  First and foremost, let’s work together on performing cardiac screenings to rule out that chance of sudden death, educate all involved with CPR and AED usage.  Below you will find a list of possible heart abnormalities which can cause sudden cardiac death.  Do your research and implement the necessary steps required to keep our youth and community safe.
  • Atherosclerotic CAD
  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
  • Anomalous coronary arteries
  • Sickle cell trait
  • Wolfe Parkinson White
  • Long QT syndrome
  • Anabolic steroid use
  • Many thanks to all involved in Heart of a Legend Foundation where we provide free cardiac screenings to all ages. Our screenings save lives and bring peace of mind.

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