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7News On Your Side: Should you get your child's heart scanned ahead of spring sports?

Kids and mental health. (7News/FILE)
Kids and mental health. (7News/FILE)
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Many parents are signing up their kids for spring sports like lacrosse, tennis, volleyball, and swimming.

Some of the sports leagues may require a physical. In light of what happened to Buffalo Bills player Damar Hamlin, some parents might be wondering if they should push for some sort of heart scan during that physical.

ALSO READ | Damar Hamlin attends 1st Bills game since collapse

7News' Adrianna Hopkins asked Dr. Charles Berul, a pediatric cardiologist at Children’s National Hospital.

He said it is important to determine who is at risk before they hit the field. Your pediatrician should ask if your child has experienced heart palpitations, fainted, or become dizzy *while exercising. He says this is the other big question:

“The other thing to ask is the family history. Do they have a parent or first-degree relative who’s had heart issues before the age of 40 or 50? And that might be of concern for some inherited conditions,” he explained.

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He says those “red flags” will determine if your pediatrician refers you to someone else for additional evaluation. He stressed that what happened to Damar Hamlin was so rare and freak that it shouldn’t keep a kid from playing a sport.

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