Special heart screenings have been taking place in La Porte. October is National Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month and in light of the recent death of 17 year old Jake West, a La Porte High School football player who collapsed during practice and died from a genetic heart defect last month, Indiana University Health La Porte Hospital is offering those screenings for student athletes at no cost on a limited basis. Registration is required.
Additional information from IU Health La Porte Hospital:
LA PORTE, Ind.–In recognition of National Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Month in October, Indiana University Health La Porte Hospital is offering free heart screenings to student athletes on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Screenings are offered to area high school students, ages 15 and older, on:
· Thursday, Oct. 17 from 3 pm to 7 pm
· Tuesday, Oct 22 from 4 pm to 8 pm
· Thursday, Oct. 24 from 4 pm to 8 pm
· Tuesday, Oct 29 from 4 pm to 8 pm
· Saturday, Nov. 2 from 8 am to noon (all Central times)
A limited number of free screenings will be performed at the IU Health La Porte Heart & Vascular Center, 901 E. Lincolnway, Ste. 102, in La Porte. Pre-registration is required by calling 219.326.2309. In addition, students must have signed parental consent and not be under the care of a physician for any cardiac-related conditions.
Student athletes will be screened with an electrocardiogram and limited echocardiogram. The specialized tests, which take about 15 minutes, help identify any possible structural abnormalities within the cardiovascular system that may lead to premature cardiac arrest, screening organizers said.
“Recent events have brought the issue of Sudden Cardiac Death (SCD) to the forefront,” IU Health La Porte Hospital Director of Cardiovascular Services, Mary Drewes, MSN, BSN, RN, said. “The tragic loss of one of our community’s student athletes has prompted many questions, fears and a sense of helplessness. Our cardiologists, in collaboration with our team in Cardiovascular Services, look forward to providing these screenings. We are committed to meeting the needs of our community as a whole.”
In addition, IU Health La Porte Hospital cardiologists and specialists will present heart and vascular education on Monday, Oct. 21 at the La Porte High School Auditorium at 6 pm for freshman/sophomore parents and 7 pm for junior/senior parents.
For those unable to attend the free screenings, the “Heart Cart for High Schools” program offers similar screenings through the hospital’s Heart Cart Mobile Screening Unit in partnership with The Foundation, in support of IU Health La Porte Hospital. “Heart Cart for High Schools” screenings are offered at a discounted rate of $50. Students will be screened for cholesterol, blood sugar, electrocardiogram and limited echocardiogram. For more information or to schedule, call 219.326.2626 or toll-free 800.235.6204, ext. 2626.