Although SUDDEN CARDIAC ARREST (SCA) occurs even at young ages and at rest, the likelihood of child and young adult SCA for those with underlying cardiovascular disease is increased by athletic participation.
[9. Maron BJ, Epstein SE, Roberts WC. Causes of sudden death in competitive athletes. J Am Coll Cardiol. 1986;7(1):204–214]
SUDDEN CARDIAC ARREST RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS
Important steps for consideration include:
1. Recognize the warning signs and symptoms of SCA, including those that may “misdirect” initial evaluation to noncardiac specialties and, thus, delay correct diagnosis.
2. Understand the role of comprehensive and accurate family history and pedigree for preventing SCA stemming from inherited cardiac genetic disorders.
3. Use standardized (Pre-Participation Examination) PPE forms and processes to minimize unnecessary variation.
4. Ensure that identified patients and/ or families with known or suspected cardiac disorders are referred to a pediatric cardiac center for further comprehensive evaluation and management. Appropriate EKG, echocardiography, exercise testing, or genetic testing, as indicated.
5. Advocate for autopsy evaluation by a medical examiner familiar with rarely encountered heritable cardiac diseases causing SCA when pediatric SCA occurs. Procurement of and retention of DNA-bearing tissue for subsequent molecular autopsy should be encouraged for autopsy-negative cases.
6. Support education programs for effective bystander CPR and appropriate AED use.
7. Support development of effective school emergency response programs.
8. Consider participation in school emergency response programs as a medical director.
9. Support efforts to mandate a central registry for pediatric SCA as a reportable event.
10. Support recommendation for evidence- based evaluation of national screening processes and programs.
[POLICY STATEMENT: Pediatric Sudden Cardiac Arrest Abstract PEDIATRICS Volume 129, Number 4, April 2012 e1101 FROM THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS Downloaded from pediatrics.aappublications.org by guest on June 24, 2013]