The syndrome, known as SADS, which stands for Sudden Adult Death Syndrome has been fatal for all kinds of people regardless of whether they maintain a fit and healthy lifestyle.
People under the age of 40 are being urged to have their hearts checked because they may be at risk.
SADS is a term to describe unexpected and sudden death in young people, says The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, which mostly occurs in people under the age of 40.
They state that someone died of this syndrome when they can’t find an obvious cause of death post-mortem.
The US-based SADS Foundation says that over half of the 4000 annual deaths of SADS, young adults, teens or children have one of the two warning signs.
The signs include a family history of a SADS diagnosis of sudden unexplained death of a family member, and fainting or seizure during training or exercise, or when excited or startled, says news.com.au.
Last year a woman named Catherine Keane, who was 31-year-old at that time, died in her sleep.
Her mother told the Irish Mirror, “They were all working from home so no one really paid attention when Catherine didn’t come down for breakfast.”
“They sent her a text at 11.20am and when she didn’t reply, they checked her room and found she had passed. Her friend heard a noise in her room at 3.56AM and believes now that is when she died.”
Ms. Cummins, her mother, said that her daughter “went to the gym and walked 10,000 steps every day”.
“I take some comfort in that she went in her sleep and knew no pain and I’m grateful for that. I always worried about the kids driving in the car but never saw this coming. I never thought I’d ever lose a child in my life.”
Melbourne’s Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute is now developing the country’s first SADS registry.
“There are approximately 750 cases per year of people aged under 50 in Victoria suddenly having their heart stop (cardiac arrest),” a spokesperson said.
“Of these, approximately 100 young people per year will have no cause found even after extensive investigations such as a full autopsy (SADS phenomenon).”
Cardiologist and researcher Dr. Elizabeth Paratz gave a statement: “Baker’s registry was the first in the country and one of only a few in the world that combined ambulance, hospital and forensics information.”
“(It allows you to see) people have had the cardiac arrest and no cause was found on the back end,” Dr Paratz said.
Dr. Elizabeth believes that the lack of awareness may be because of the fact that a lot of it takes place outside of the hospitals.
“The majority of these SADS events, 90 per cent, occur outside the hospital – the person doesn’t make it – so it’s actually ambulance staff and forensics caring for the bulk of these patients,” Dr. Paratz said.
“I think even doctors underestimate it. We only see the 10 per cent who survive and make it to hospital. We only see the tip of the iceberg ourselves.”
For the family and friends it comes as a shock if they had a relative who passed away from SADS, because it’s a “diagnosis of nothing” said Dr. Paratz.
“The best advice would be, if you yourself have had a first-degree relative – a parent, sibling, child – who’s had an unexplained death, it’s extremely recommended you see a cardiologist,” she said.
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Source used: Daily Mail