Cardiac arrhythmias are a common cause of Sudden Adult Death Syndrome, SADS. One in particular, Long QT syndrome, may be genetic in origin.
Sometimes there are no warning signs, but in other cases people can experience dizziness or fainting spells. Sudden loss of consciousness or death often occurs during physical exercise or emotional upset.
The frequency of the condition isn't fully known as many sudden deaths are put down to accidents. But research has indicated that about 500 deaths a year in the UK are because of sudden arrhythmic death syndrome.
Causes And Risk Factors Of SADS
Inheritance may be a factor, depending on the underlying syndrome but some conditions are genetic disorders and some are acquired, due to medication.
As more people become aware of the syndromes that may be responsible, more families and individuals are being diagnosed as being at risk.
In some situations, the use of beta blocker medications are effective in 90 per cent of cases. In other cases, surgery might be appropriate.