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Analysis

Harms and benefits of screening young people to prevent sudden cardiac death

BMJ 2016; 353 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i1156 (Published 20 April 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;353:i1156

Rapid Response:

Re: Harms and benefits of screening young people to prevent sudden cardiac death

In this literature review, Van Brabandt et al. conclude recommending against screening young athletes to prevent sudden cardiac death. [1] They stressed that only one study carried out in Italy, and published in 2006 by Corrado et al., showed screening benefit.[2] Requests to obtain additional data from the Italian screening study were not successful. Such behaviour is in agreement with critical comments to a paper about outcomes in athletes with marked ECG repolarization abnormalities, published in New England Journal of Medicine, with two coauthors of Corrado paper [3]. That article, by Pelliccia et al., had serious limitations (as reporting their cohort study as a matched case-control study). However, although many messages sent to NEJM, my letter was not published. [4]
[1] Van Brabandt H, Desomer A, Gerkens S, Neyt M. BMJ 2016; 353:i1156 doi: 10.1136/bmj.i1156
[2] Corrado et al. JAMA 2006
[3] Pellicciani et al. NEJM 2008
[4] Eluf-Neto J. Rev Bras Epidemiol 2008.

Competing interests: No competing interests

26 April 2016
Jose Eluf Neto
Professor
Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de São Paulo
Av. Dr. Arnaldo 455 Sao Paulo - SP 01246-903 Brazil