Benefits of Screening

Screening is a process of identifying disease or medical conditions in apparently healthy people.

General Screening

Cardiovascular disease is one of the leading causes of premature death in the western world. It is the leading cause of preventable illness since many of the conditions, if caught early, are treatable with proven and effective prevention measures.

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The purpose of heart screening is to detect heart abnormalities early. This means that treatments can be given and interventions made in people whose heart abnormalities may have otherwise gone undetected. Early diagnosis means lives saved.
Many heart conditions, such as Ischaemic Heart Disease, Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM), Coronary Artery Disease, Dilated Cardiomyopathy, Hypertension, and Atrial Fibrillation are common yet may cause no symptoms whatsoever for many years before presentation, so their detection requires screening.
Heart screening has been compulsory in all teenagers and adults competing in athletic sports in Italy since 1982. Many other European countries offer similar cardiac screening programmes including France, Greece, Spain, Luxembourg, Sweden, Norway, Germany and Poland.
In the UK, all adults over the age of 40 are encouraged to attend for a vascular risk check. As yet, however, screening for other types of heart disease is largely unfunded by the NHS. Some limited services are provided by charities such as Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) and a few other small private companies around the country.
Often, screening is able to exclude abnormalities and provide reassurance and peace of mind for customers.

The NHS offer guidelines on the screening services they offer and guidance on private screening choices. You can access this information at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/nhs-screening/

Screening for Athletes

Sudden death, especially in those who are seemingly healthy with no previous symptoms, is a tragic event that devastates families. Currently in the UK, anecdotal evidence suggests that twelve young people die per week as a cause of previously undiagnosed inherited cardiac disease.

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Studies suggested that 81 % of these deaths occur during or immediately following exercise. The vast majority of cases are with people participating in grass-roots level, non-professional sport. Exercise appears to act as a trigger for individuals who are predisposed to sudden cardiac death and therefore there is a growing awareness for the need for pre-participation screening. The European Society of Cardiology advocates screening for all competitive athletes. English Premier League football clubs now routinely screen all players for cardiac disease. Waves Health Screening’s mission is to make affordable cardiac screening available for everyone participating in sports in the north east of England.

Partied Hard?

Regular or high alcohol use can damage your heart and lead to diseases of the heart muscle, called cardiomyopathy. Drinking alcohol regularly can also raise your blood pressure.

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Binge drinking — four or more drinks for women and five or more for men — can also cause irregular heart rhythms called arrhythmias.
Many drugs used for recreational purposes can cause serious health problems. One of the possible effects of drug use is heart dysfunction, even in those who have no previous history of heart disease.
Cocaine, in particular, can cause lasting damage to the heart structure and function, even in low doses. Another common side effect is arrhythmia, or an irregular heartbeat. Changes in blood pressure, heart attacks and stroke can occur.
Waves Health Screening offer a strictly confidential service. Any history of alcohol or drug use, and the results of the tests carried out will only be shared with other healthcare professionals if you wish them to be.
Screening can offer reassurance to those who may have concerns about the toll their lifestyle may have taken on their health.

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