Safety precautions take pro athlete LaMarcus Aldridge out of the game indefinitely due to irregular heartbeat
San Antonio Spurs’ LaMarcus Aldridge will be out of the game indefinitely due to a minor heart arrhythmia, according to the San Antonio Spurs Twitter account. “All parties have concluded at the current time it is best for Aldridge to refrain from play until further tests and examinations are completed.”
Suffering from an irregular heartbeat is not new for the basketball star. In 2007, when he was 21 years old, Aldridge underwent a series of tests and was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White, which can be cured through a simple ablation procedure of the accessory electrical pathway of the heart.
In December of 2011, Aldridge underwent an additional ablation to fix a recurrence of his disease during his routine checkup with a cardiologist.
In a 2015 video for American Express, Aldridge described how he was born with a heart condition and had many scares as a child:
“As a kid, I would get these little flutters. My heart would just start racing,” he said in the ad. “Actually, I died at birth. My mom told me that when I came out of the womb, I wasn’t breathing. They kept pulling on my chest. I wasn’t alive. And then I fought back.”
The important lesson in Aldridge’s story is that his heart condition was identified before he could suffer sudden cardiac arrest.
Heart testing is necessary, not only for pro athletes but for student athletes in high school and college. Aldridge was first diagnosed with WPW when he was 21 years old. Wolff-Parkinson-White is a congenital disease, meaning Aldridge was born with the condition. Imagine if he would have suffered sudden cardiac death while playing high school basketball?
At 31 years old, Aldridge is lucky to be under the care of physicians who know his heart history, and he can take the safety precautions necessary to protect his life.
Student athletes, beginning in high school, need to be proactively tested for underlying heart conditions. LEARN MORE about protecting your students by signing them up for cardiovascular testing.