Athletes and Arrhythmias

Athletes and Arrhythmias

Authors: Jansen, Michael J.; Burke, Floyd W.

Sudden cardiac death related to athletic competition is a rare but tragic event. The victims are typically young with no previous cardiovascular symptoms or limitations. The majority of sudden cardiac death events in athletes are due to ventricular arrhythmias as a result of underlying molecular and/or structural level pathologic substrate. In this article, we will review the physiologic cardiac adaptations to exercise along with arrhythmias seen in athletes with a focus on those commonly associated with sudden cardiac death.