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Herzschrittmacherther Elektrophysiol. 2012 Jun;23(2):72-5. Epub 2012 Jul 28.

Syncope in the athlete.

Author information

  • 1Cardiology, The University of Toledo College of Medicine, 3000 Arlington Avenue, 43614, Toledo, OH, USA. blair.grubb@utoledo.edu


Syncope in the athlete requires a complete evaluation, as this may be the only warning prior to an episode of sudden cardiac death. This should include a detailed history which includes specific details of the event as well as bystander descriptions when possible. Following the history should be a careful physical examination and subsequent diagnostic testing based on the individual's needs. The purpose of the evaluation is to determine if structural or electrical heart disease is present that may lead to sudden death. If absent, the patient, family and staff can be reassured that it is safe to resume athletic activity. Careful attention to the athlete with syncope may both prevent potential disasters in some, while at the same time enjoyment of intense physical activity in others.

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