A New Jersey high school quarterback died after what appeared to be a normal tackle during a Friday night football game. Evan Murray a 17 year old senior at Warren Hills Regional High School was on the ground for a short time after the tackle. Murray walked to the sidelines unassisted. Murray collapsed a short time later during half time and was transported to Morristown Medical Center where he died. Murray appeared to be a strong young athlete his cause of death has not yet been determined. Sudden death in individuals under 30 is often due to heart abnormalities or hidden heart defects. While the abnormalities are rare red flags should be taken seriously and further screening should be done. Know the warning signs! Red Flags for parents and coaches-
Pay attention to the warning signs that your child may be at risk for sudden cardiac death;
1. Has your child complained of chest pain, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing or a racing heart with exercise
2. Unexplained fainting or dizziness that occurs during physical activity. This is usually caused by dehydration or low blood pressure but it could be due to a heart condition.
3. Parents if you experience fainting or tire easily after exercise you may have a heart condition. This increases the risk that your child has inherited a problem.
4. Check your Family History- Sudden cardiac death in family members who are under 50 could be a warning sign or if there is a history of SIDS in the family.
Take your child's sports physical seriously. Think about each question and consider the red flags above. If your child exhibits any of the risk above be sure to consult their doctor about screening tests for heart defects.