Sports-related sudden cardiac death in Spain. A multicenter, population-based, forensic study of 288 cases.

Rev Esp Cardiol (Engl Ed). 2020 Sep 09;:

Authors: Morentin B, Suárez-Mier MP, Monzó A, Ballesteros J, Molina P, Lucena J

INTRODUCTION AND OBJECTIVES: To determine the incidence of sports-related sudden cardiac death in Spain, and to identify the clinical-pathological characteristics, substance abuse, and sports activity associated with this entity.
METHODS: Retrospective, population-based, multicenter study of forensic autopsies conducted in 25 provinces during an 8-year period (2010-2017).
RESULTS: We investigated 288 cases (98.6% occurred in men with a mean age of 43.8±14.4 years). The incidence in the general population was 0.38 cases out of 100 000 inhabitants per year (0.82 among regular athletes), and most cases (54%) occurred in persons aged between 35 and 54 years. The most frequent sports (96% recreational) were cycling (28%), football (18%), and jogging (17%). Death was of cardiovascular origin in 99%. The main causes were ischemic heart disease (63%), cardiomyopathies (21%), and sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (6%). In young people, cardiomyopathies (38%) and ischemic heart disease (30%), present after the age of 20 years, were the most prevalent. The disease was diagnosed during life in 23 cases, relevant clinical antecedents were observed in 30 cases, and cardiovascular risk factors, mainly obesity, in 95 cases. Toxicological analysis detected cardiotoxic substances in 7%, highlighting the association between cannabis and acute ischemic heart disease.
CONCLUSIONS: Sports-related sudden cardiac death in Spain has a very low incidence and affects middle-aged men practicing recreational sports, mainly cycling, football, and jogging. This entity is of cardiovascular origin with early onset of ischemic heart disease. Clinical data and substance abuse should be taken into account to develop preventive strategies.

PMID: 32920001 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

Source: ncbi 2

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