The Impact of Ethnicity on Athlete ECG Interpretation: A Systematic Review

The Impact of Ethnicity on Athlete ECG Interpretation: A Systematic Review.

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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Official URL:
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Cardiovascular Development and Disease
Volume: 9
Number: 6
Page Range: p. 183
Date: 8 June 2022
Divisions: Molecular Cardiology
Depositing User: General Admin
Identification Number: 10.3390/jcdd9060183
ISSN: 2308-3425
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2022 00:51

Athlete ECG interpretation criteria have been developed and refined from research in athlete populations; however, current guidelines are based on available data primarily from Caucasian and Black athletes. This study aimed to assess the impact of ethnicity on ECG interpretation in athletes. A systematic review was conducted of the MEDLINE, EMBASE, Scopus, SPORTDiscus, and Web of Science databases, for papers that assessed athlete screening ECGs and compared findings on the basis of ethnicity. Fifty-one papers which compared ECGs from various ethnicities were included. Most studies assessed Black athletes against Caucasian athletes and found a greater prevalence of T-wave inversion (TWI) (2.6-22.8% vs. 0-5.0%) and anterior TWI (3.7-14.3% vs. 0.6-2.0%). Black athlete subgroups in Africa had TWI (20-40%) and anterior TWI (4.3-18.7%) at a higher prevalence than other Black athletes. Athletes who were defined as mixed-race, Asian, and Pacific Islander are potentially more like Black athletes than Caucasian athletes. Black ethnicity is known to have an impact on the accurate interpretation of athlete ECGs; however, there is nuance related to origin of both parents. Asian and Pacific Islander origin also may impact athlete ECG interpretation. Further research is required to assist in distinguishing abnormal and normal athlete ECGs in different ethnic populations.

Davis, Angus J.
Semsarian, Christopher
Orchard, John W.
La Gerche, Andre
Orchard, Jessica J.
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2022 21:53

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