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Call for joint informed consent in athletes with inherited cardiac conditions
  1. Rui Providencia1,
  2. Carina Teixeira2,
  3. Oliver R Segal1,
  4. Augustus Ullstein3 and
  5. Pier D Lambiase1,4
  1. 1Barts Health NHS Trust, London, UK
  2. 2Centre for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  3. 339 Essex Chambers, London, UK
  4. 4University College of London, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor Pier D Lambiase; pierlambiase{at}


Informed consent is of the utmost importance, especially in complex clinical situations where patients may be exposed to a life-threatening risk. A particularly complex example is the eligibility of competitive athletes with inherited cardiac conditions on medical grounds, especially when the risk is low or unquantifiable. The rationale and benefits of a joint informed consent for athletes to compete with potentially life-threatening cardiac conditions are discussed in this manuscript.

  • sports
  • athletes

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  • Contributors RP, ORS and PDL are cardiac electrophysiologists at the largest specialist cardiac centre in the UK, and PDL is the clinical lead for the Inherited Arrhythmia Service and coauthor on national guidelines on diagnosis and sudden death prevention in inherited cardiac conditions. CT is a psychologist and researcher, with an interest in Empowerment, Decision-Making and Ethics. AU is a Queen's Council Barrister with expertise in Personal Injury, Clinical Negligence, Sports Law and Professional Negligence. RP and CT identified and proposed the need for the informed consent in this setting and wrote the first draft of the manuscript, which was thoroughly revised by PDL and ORS. A second draft of the manuscript was then prepared and discussed with AU who provided legal advice and suggested areas of improvement. The last draft of the paper was then prepared accordingly. The final version of the manuscript was revised by all authors, and approved before submission.

  • Funding CT was funded by the Advanced Rehabilitation Research Training program (grant number 90AR5018) of the National Institute on Disability Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), housed within the Agency for Community Living (ACL) at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). PDL was supported by University College of London Hospitals Biomedicine Research Centre, a Partnership between University College of London and University College of London Hospitals NHS Trust, funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR); British Heart Foundation.

  • Disclaimer The contents of this project do not necessarily represent the policy of NIDILRR, ACL, HHS and you should not assume endorsement by the US Federal Government.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement No additional data are available.