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Save a Student Athlete’s Life During National Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month

| Indianapolis—In recognition of October being National Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month, Indiana University Health Cardiovascular is offering free- and reduced-cost heart screenings for student athletes across central Indiana as part of its Echoes for Athletes program.

During sudden cardiac arrest, the heart abruptly stops pumping blood - typically in response to unexpected, chaotic heart rhythms. When this happens, blood stops flowing to the brain, the heart and the rest of the body. The victim will suddenly lose consciousness, collapse and normal breathing will stop. The victim will show no signs of life and death can come in seconds. Several student athlete deaths from sudden cardiac arrest in recent years prompted cardiologists to start the Echoes for Athletes program.

“With school and sports well underway, October is an ideal time for parents to register their children for heart screenings,” said Dr. Edward Harlamert, a cardiologist with IU Health. “Echoes for Athletes is different from many programs, in that it costs little or nothing to the parent and we bring this leading-edge technology to the school, so students don’t have to miss class time to go to the hospital.”

Echoes for Athletes provides echocardiograms to evaluate heart size, valvular motion, chamber and valvular function and chamber size. The 15-minute process is a non-invasive way to rule out the major cardiac conditions that can affect young athletes. These could include Marfans Syndrome, Hypertrophic Obstructive Cardiomyopathy, Aortic Stenosis and Mitral Valve Prolapse.

Screenings, which run from 5-8:30 p.m., are open to any student within the district and are free for Indianapolis Public Schools students and $20 in other districts. A typical screening in a hospital costs upwards of $300. Students must be at least 12 years old and parents should register their children in advance at echoesforathletes.com or by calling (888) 7-HEART-8.

Upcoming screenings include:
• Arsenal Technical High School (IPS) – Oct. 5 and 12
• Hamilton Southeastern Junior High (Fishers) – Oct. 10
• Cathedral High School (Indianapolis) – Oct. 17
• Yorktown High School (Yorktown) – Oct. 26

To schedule an interview with Dr. Edward Harlamert, please contact Kristofer Karol at 317.962.4589.

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About Indiana University Health Named among the “Best Hospitals in America” by U.S. News & World Report for 14 consecutive years, Indiana University Health is dedicated to providing a unified standard of preeminent, patient-centered care. A unique partnership with Indiana University School of Medicine – one of the nation’s leading medical schools – gives our highly skilled physicians access to innovative treatments using the latest research and technology. Discover the strength at iuhealth.org.

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