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SmartTeams Talk: Enacting Pro-Active Policies To Prevent Sudden Death in Youth Sports Is Challenging, Says UConn's Casa

The leading expert on sudden death of youth athletes argues that youth sports safety policies need to be developed and implemented by sports medicine professionals, not athletic administrators, and notes that the level of risk of catastrophic sports injury often depends on how a state athletic association responds to the death of athletes in their states.

School-Based AED Programs Save Lives, Study Shows

HIgh-school AED programs demonstrate a high survival rate for students as well as adults who suffer sudden cardiac arrest on school campuses, says a new study, which strongly recommends school-based AED programmes as an important public safety measure and an effective strategy for the prevention of sudden cardiac death during sports.

Survey To Collect Data On Health Screening Of Athletes

We've been asked by Gloria Wu, M.D., a physician active in the Sudden Cardiac Death Association of San Jose, California, and an Associate Clinical Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine, for help on a research project she is working on in the area of health screening (a/k/a pre-participation physical evaluations) and its importance to athletes. Please help Gloria and her team by taking this 1-minute survey to help them learn more about this issue.

CPR Training for Parents: Why It's Important and What You Should Know

Nearly 350,000 people suffer cardiac arrest annually.   Because cardiac arrest leads to the death of one youth athlete every three days in the United States, sports parents should know how to perform CPR and use an AED, which can significantly increase a victim's chances of survival.

New Jersey Athletic Trainers To Hold Third Annual Sports Safety Summit

MomsTEAM has consistently supported athletic trainers' groups, both at the national (NATA) and state level, in their efforts to improve youth sports safety, both through education and by advocating for ATs in every high school (less than half of U.S. high schools have an AT on staff, although the percentages vary dramatically from state to state).

One of the most active athletic trainers' association at the state level is in New Jersey, which was the first state to require by law that coaches receive safety training, is among the 40 states that have enacted strong youth concussion safety laws, and has been a leader in advocating for academic accommodations for concussed student-athletes. 

Athletic trainers are essential to making youth sports as safe as it can be.  Educational programs, such as the Athletic Trainers Society of New Jersey's third annual sports safety summit on August 1, 2012 in New Brunswick, New Jersey, are important to educating health care professionals on safety issues, including concussions, heat illness, sudden cardiac death and overuse injuries.

Vincent Burke (Physical Therapist): Recognized Signs Of Athlete's Life-Threatening Heart Condition

In recognition of April as National Youth Sports Safety Month, MomsTeam asked 30 experts to write a blog in 2012 answering two questions: first, how or why did they get into their field, and second, how have they made a difference in the life of a youth athlete in the past year.

Today, we hear again from Vincent Burke, a physical therapist, and the owner and operator of Infinity Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine and the Infinity Fitness & Sports Institute in Rochelle Park, New Jersey.

By Vincent M. Burke, PT, DPT, MPT, BS, NASM-CPT

Sometimes a physical therapist does more than just help an athlete recover from injury.  Sometimes they can actually help save an athlete's life.

Preventing Commotio Cordis in Youth Baseball

Young baseball and softball players who receive direct ball impact to the chest wall directly over the heart may develop sudden cardiac arrest, a condition called commotio cordis.  Teaching batters to turn away from an inside pitch, and pitchers to react as quickly as possible to a batted ball hit back at them can help reduce the risk, and an AED and a someone trained in CPR should be on-site.

Screening Athletes For Heart Conditions: Debate Continues

The death of young, seemingly healthy, athletes from undetected heart problems often generates considerable media attention and re-ignites the debate over the optimal approach to screening young competitive athletes for heart problems to minimize death from sudden cardiac arrest.

HCM and Sudden Cardiac Death in Young Athletes

About 50 young athletes go into sudden cardiac arrest each year and die from a rare congenital heart defect called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM ).   While some parent groups advocate for routine electrocardiogram (ECG) screening for youth athletes, sports administrator Donald Collins says attacking the HCM problem through education, by forming alliances between schools, leagues and sports governing bodies with medical organizations and by the taking of detailed family history during a young athlete's pre-participation physical evaluation is a cost-effective approach to early detection.  
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