Texas Politics Put EKG Testing in the Spotlight

Texas Politics Put EKG Testing in the Spotlight - Post

texas-ekg-politicsAt Medicine Within Reach, we provide a number of services, including onsite EKG testing. Recently, we’ve turned our eyes to Texas, where EKG testing is part of a heated political debate. CBS DFW explores this in a recent article titled “Texas House Mandates EKG Tests For High School Athletes.”

The author of the article writes, “The Texas House has preliminarily approved requiring high school athletes to undergo electrocardiogram testing for possible degenerative heart problems before participating in campus sports. Representatives voted 86-57 Monday to make EKG testing mandatory as part of physicals taken to participate in all University Interscholastic League activities. They did so while Scott Stephens – whose son Cody was a high school football player but died in 2012 of sudden cardiac arrest just before graduating – watched from the gallery.”

Jim Vertuno of the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal adds some analysis in a recent article titled “Texas the front line on high school ECG debate.” Vertuno writes, “But opponents of mandatory screening, including the American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association, question its effectiveness, saying it would lead to thousands of false-positives each year, which would lead to further, more expensive testing that isn’t necessary. Furthermore, they point out that relatively few children die of sudden cardiac arrest. According to Texas officials, only nine of the more than 13.6 million public middle school and high school students who played sports from 2005 through 2014 died of cardiac arrest during a game or practice. That figure doesn’t reflect Cody Stephens’ death, because he died at home. ‘Indeed, the major cause of death in young athletes, by a factor of 10-fold, is accidents,’ said Dr. Benjamin Levine, a Dallas-based cardiologist and former vice president of the American College of Sports Medicine, who opposes the mandatory testing proposal. The debate over mandatory electrocardiograms, also known as ECG or EKG tests, has been swirling for years and is rekindled with each death of a young athlete. Despite the resistance of the medical establishment, groups like the Stephens’ have been sprouting up throughout the country.”

Potentially unreliable EKG testing is a major concern. At Medicine Within Reach, we provide onsite EKG testing as part of our numerous services.

We are a group of primary care physicians who have joined together to improve healthcare in San Francisco through concierge medicine. Our individualized approach is designed to serve your specific needs. Some of the benefits of our service include flexible scheduling, easy accessibility, and comprehensive care for complex medical needs. In addition to onsite EKG testing, we also provide comprehensive annual physical examinations, women’s health testing, and preventative health planning.

If you’re considering concierge medicine, contact Medicine Within Reach for a consultation.


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