- England women reach agreeement with Cardio Direct
- Every player provided with cardiovascular sports screening
Photo: Cardio Direct
The England women's rugby team have reached at agreement with Cardio Direct, who will provide cardiovascular screening to every player in the squad.
The scheme is designed to promote awareness of cardiac screening among female athletes and is also being extended to the under 20's.
The company works with professional clubs and individual athletes in the promotion and provision of cardiac screening and ongoing support.
The European Society of Cardiology (ESC 2005) recommends cardiac screening for any young person taking part in competitive sport and the women of the RFUW, like all professional athletes regularly push their hearts to an extreme. It’s therefore critical that any hidden heart problems which can be structural or electrical, are diagnosed and treated.
England Doctor Steve Lewis said: "Cardiac screening is a vital assessment which allows us to introduce intense training and conditioning programmes for the players, safe in the knowledge that their hearts are capable of coping with the subsequent physiological stress placed upon them.
"I am very pleased that Cardio Direct have made this screening available to our ladies who have previously been unable to be screened to the level that is being offered. It is an excellent service which gives reassurance to both players and medics alike."
A cardiac screening includes:
- A questionnaire, covering family history, medical history and a check list of possible exercise related conditions
- Blood pressure measurement
- A 12 lead ECG
- An echocardiogram
- A conclusive report on the results from a consultant cardiologist
Alongside the screening programme in partnership with the RFUW, Cardio Direct plans to use the data collected to add to research into the athletic heart. To date there is no published research into female athletes and their hearts and Cardio Direct hopes to use the data to help understand and reduce cardiac incidence in athletes.