Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
from September 2014
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2008) 07, 292 - 298

Case report
Soccer Related Sudden Deaths in Turkey
Çaglar Özdemir1, , Tolga Saka2, Haşim Asil1, Ibrahim Üzün3, Mutlu Öner4
Author Information
1 Department of Forensic Medicine, Erciyes University Medical Faculty, Kayseri, Turkey
2 Department of Sport Medicine, Erciyes University Medical Faculty, Kayseri, Turkey
3 Council of Forensic Medicine, Istanbul, Turkey
4 Directorate of National Education, Kayseri, Turkey

Çaglar Özdemir
✉ Department of Forensic Medicine Erciyes University Medical Faculty, Kayseri, Turkey
Publish Date
Received: 28-12-2007
Accepted: 27-02-2008
Published (online): 01-06-2008
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Regular physical exercise is recommended by the medical community, because it offers the potential to reduce the incidence of coronary events. On the other hand, vigorous exertion may act as a trigger of acute myocardial infarction and sudden cardiac death in susceptible individuals. Death during sports activities differs among sports disciplines and countries. In Turkey, soccer attracts more spectators than any other sports activity and the attention of the press and media, and is preferred over other sports by many young and middle-aged individuals. As autopsy-based studies are infrequent in literature and there is a lack of data detailing sudden death during physical activity in Turkey, we present a Turkish series of sudden deaths that occurred during soccer games based on data provided by the Morgue Specialization Department of the Council of Forensic Medicine. We identified 15 male cases of soccer-related sudden death aged from 10 to 48 years. Coronary artery disease was identified as the cause of sudden death in 11 cases.

Key words: Recreational, soccer, sudden death, autopsy.

           Key Points
  • This study is one of the largest series of soccer related SD with reported 15 cases.
  • In our series, CAD is the most common cause of SCD also in very young athletes in contrast with international literature.
  • In autopsy, detailed cardio-vascular system evaluation and toxicological analysis including doping agents are essential to determine precise cause of exercise induced SD.
  • Medical screening is important for all people interested in sport, not only for athletes, as a powerful means of prevention.
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