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Medicina dello Sport 2014 March;67(1):159-71

Copyright © 2014 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English, Italian

Assessment of athletes with rhythm disorders: current and emerging indications for implantable cardiac monitors

Giada F.

Unit of Sports Medicine and Cardiovascular Rehabilitation Service, PF Calvi Hospital, Noale, Venice, Italy


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Implantable cardiac monitors (ICMs) continuously monitor the patient’s electrocardiogram and perform real-time analysis of the heart rhythm, for up to 6 years. The current clinical use of ICMs in sports cardiology involves the evaluation of athletes with transitory symptoms of possible arrhythmic origin, such as unexplained syncope and palpitations, and those with difficult cases of epilepsy, though current indications for their application in these sectors are less clearly defined. Moreover, the ability of ICMs to automatically record arrhythmic episodes suggests that these devices could also be used to study asymptomatic arrhythmias, and thus could be proposed for the long-term evaluation of the total (symptomatic and asymptomatic) arrhythmic burden in athletes at risk of arrhythmic events. In particular, ICMs may have an emerging role in the management of athletes with atrial fibrillation and in those at risk of ventricular arrhythmias and bradyarrhythmias.

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