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Heart screenings for teen athletes

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TWC News: Heart screenings for teen athletes
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You may remember the story of Brian Breedlove, the Westlake teenager who died from a serious heart condition Christmas Day last year. He suffered from a disease called Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy, or HCM.

A simple screening can help prevent tragedies like these, and local doctors at the Heart Hospital of Austin are working to save lives by offering free heart screenings. The test targets teen athletes, no matter how strong they are or how well they play.

Caused by a thickening of the heart muscle, HCM affects one in 500 people and often shows no symptoms. However, the condition is made worse the longer and harder an athlete plays as the heart has to work harder, and for some, it can be deadly.

Sixteen-year-old Tanner Goodman says he thinks the screening is important for athletes like himself. His test shows a healthy heart, but for others, the screening can diagnose the disease before it is too late.

The Heart Hospital of Austin is holding free heart screenings for teens ages 14 to 18 on Saturday, August 4th from 8 a.m. until noon, by appointment only. Call 478-3627 for more information.

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