Cardiac Care at races is a new frontier being addressed by the Chicagoland running community. While there are no clear-cut answers, we need to be ready if something happens. I attended a seminar for race directors tonight on the specific topic of Cardiac Care. It was hosted by USA Track and Field-Illinois and led by Dr. Meechai Tessaloe, a cardiologist based in Hinsdale, and for the past few years, an active participant on the local triathlon circuit. The bottom line for me was that runners need to be pushed a little more to have physical exams before they embark on some of their ambitious racing goals. And if they are over 35, they should have stress tests where medical people can look for and identify any heart conditions that might make them think twice about running a marathon or other endurance event when it's hot and humid outside. I also learned that as a race director (Community Bank of Elmhurst 4 on the 4th), I need to be even more vigilant about having CPR-trained personnel and paramedics ready to go. With CARA imposing a color-coded flag system to show conditions at Circuit races this year, this is a very hot topic for people who put on races (liability) as well as people who run them. No one wants to see any Sudden Cardiac Death at local races, but we all need to be better prepared.
Comments are welcome.