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How can a fit young footballer suffer from a heart problem?

Posted Mar 19 2012 1:29pm

Following the news yesterday that the 23-year-old Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba collapsed at the end of the first half of the FA Cup tie between Tottenham Hotspur and Bolton, everyone tends to ask the same question.

Why would a fit young athlete suddenly collapse on the football pitch with an apparent heart attackThe death of a section of heart muscle caused by an interruption in its blood supply. Also called a myocardial infarction.? Consultant Cardiologist, Dr Anthony Chow says:

It is too early to tell but this is likely to be malignant ventricular arrhythmia that has caused his heart to stop, therefore needing a defibrillatorA device used for defibrillation, which involves giving a controlled electric shock to restore normal heart rhythm in cases of cardiac arrest. to re-start his heart.

I suspect he may have a form of cardiomyopathyInflammation of the heart muscle (some form of heart muscleTissue made up of cells that can contract to bring about movement. disorder) or that he developed an acuteHas a sudden onset. inflammatory condition of the heart muscle (most often due to post viral infectionInvasion by organisms that may be harmful, for example bacteria or parasites.), called myocarditisInflammation of the heart muscle.. Further information would probably assist the diagnosisThe process of determining which condition a patient may have. and follow-up care, but he is receiving intensive care at the momentIn physics it is the tendency of a force to twist or rotate another object and that is how it should be.

Our thoughts are with Fabrice, his family and friends, and we wish him well.

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