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Elite athlete presenting with palpitations

Dr Michael Papadakis, Sports Cardiology Quiz Section Editor

The case


Elite athlete presenting with palpitations:

  • 24-year-old, black Caribbean, elite football player complained of palpitations in the 86th minute of a competitive game.
  • The palpitations lasted around 20 seconds and the player felt able to complete the game.
  • Previously asymptomatic.
  • Used caffeine supplements prior to games.
  • There was no family history of cardiovascular disease, syncope or sudden cardiac death.

An ECG was performed the following day and is shown below:

ECG Quiz



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Note: The views and opinions expressed on this page are those of the author and may not be accepted by others. While every attempt is made to keep the information up to date, there is always going to be a lag in updating information. The reader is encouraged to read this in conjunction with appropriate ESC Guidelines. The material on this page is for educational purposes and is not for use as a definitive management strategy in the care of patients. Quiz material in the site are only examples and do not guarantee outcomes from formal examinations.


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Notes to editor

Ms Liz Howard, Cardiac Physiologist, MSc in Sports Cardiology student, Cardiology Clinical Academic Group, St George’s, University of London

Dr Aneil Malhotra, Lecturer in Cardiology, Cardiology Clinical Academic Group, St George’s, University of London

Prof Sanjay Sharma, Prof of Inherited Cardiac Diseases and Sports Cardiology, Cardiology Clinical Academic Group, St George’s, University of London