What to know about physicals for young athletes

Credit: KING

What to know about physicals for young athletes

Print
Email
|

by DR. WENDY SUE SWANSON / Seattle Mama Doc

kgw.com

Posted on August 14, 2013 at 10:10 AM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 14 at 10:10 AM

It's time for sports physicals, and some parents might be wondering what these exams entail and why they're important. Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson, also known as Seattle Mama Doc, joined KING 5 to talk about sports physicals and how families can improve screening for their young athletes.

Other questions Dr. Swanson addressed include:

  • How common is sudden cardiac death in young athletes? Who is at the highest risk?
  • How do you screen children for sudden cardiac death? At what age should families start having their children screened?
  • What is happening in Washington state to protect children?
  • How can parents better advocate for their own children to protect them and understand risks?

Facts about sudden cardiac death

  • Rare but tends to run in families
  • Most common between the ages of 17 and 23
  • 90 percent of cases occur during or after exercise
  • Often cardiomyopathies or arrhythmias can be the cause

Screening children for sudden cardiac death

  • American Heart Assoication 12-question approach
  • 4 exercise, 4 family history, 4 physical exam
  • Describe how your child feels during exercise
  • Full physical exam including blood pressure
  • Sometimes an EKG or echocardiogram

What parents need to know

  • Learn about your family history -- early heart disease or drowning?
  • Make sure an automatic external defibrillator (AED) is in your school
  • Learn hands-only CPR
  • Print out pre-participation sports form

 Resources

More about Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson: Facebook | Twitter: @ | Read Her Blog

Print
Email
|