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FIFA to study cardiac arrest cases in soccer
“We have invited all national-team doctors to establish a worldwide database for cases of sudden cardiac arrest,” Dvorak told The Associated Press by telephone. “This will lead to analysis of the risk factors.”
“Sometimes we only get (details of) individual cases through the media. When we get the files we can analyze them,” he said.
The variation in data from players of different ethnic backgrounds was discussed at the inaugural FIFA medical conference held October 2009 in Zurich.
FIFA also contributed to a summit of cardiologists in Seattle last month, which was hosted by the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine.
The two-day session focused on how to better interpret readings of EKGs performed on athletes, Dvorak said.
He pointed to the 2003 death of Marc-Vivien Foe, who collapsed while playing for Cameroon against Colombia in a Confederations Cup match in France as a turning point in soccer’s awareness of potential heart problems.
“It was the imperative wake-up call that we have to deal with this situation and do everything to mitigate the risk factor,” he said.
By Matt Kibbe
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