Journal of Exercise and Nutrition
Applied Health Sciences
School of Nursing and Health Professions
Introduction: Sudden cardiac death (SCD) is the leading medical cause of death for male athletes, especially in anaerobic-based sports. Standard 12-lead electrocardiograms (STD-ECG) have received recent attention for their diagnostic utility, but lack the practicality for mass screenings. The purpose of this investigation was to assess the validity of a compact HD-EKG unit during various testing environments: rest, aerobic activity, and immediate recovery of anaerobic activity in college-age, male athletes.
Methods: Twelve college-aged (19.9 ± 1.1 years old), male athletes volunteered. Test procedures included two ECG devices, a STD-ECG and a high-definition (HD-) EKG, simultaneously recording heart rate (HR) and rhythms during rest, a single-stage walking test, and during recovery of the Wingate Anaerobic Power test.
Results: Paired t-tests did not detect differences between measures of HR and rhythm (t(47) = -0.71, p > 0.05 and t(4) = 0.82, p > 0.05, respectively). The two measures of HR were very strongly related (r = 0.98, p < 0.001). However, the absolute difference between the STD-ECG and HD-EKG averaged 3.47 ± 4.44 bpm, which is significantly different than the acceptable variance of ± 2 bpm.
Conclusions: Wearable technology, such as a portable HD-EKG device worn during vigorous anaerobic activity, such as the Wingate Anaerobic Power test, may identify athletes most at risk for SCD.
Reeves, Brenda, Priscilla Maghrabi, Brock Guetzke, and Anna Howery. "Validity of A Portable EKG Device to Monitor Heart Rate and Rhythm in College-aged Male Athletes." Journal of Exercise and Nutrition 1, no. 4 (2018).