It's too late for my Steven but compulsory heart checks would help to save others, says mum
A MOTHER whose 29-year-old son collapsed and died while she was on holiday has backed a campaign calling for compulsory heart screening in young people.
Sue Allseybrook's son, Steven, died of an undetected heart condition in June last year while she was in Benidorm with husband Graham.
Their son had complained to his colleagues of headaches days before he collapsed at home in Canterbury Street, Chaddesden – 11 days before his 30th birthday.
An inquest found he died of sudden adult death syndrome, a condition in which the heart stops for no detectable reason.
Medics say heart defects can often only be identified during life. As such, the charity CRY – Cardiac Risk in the Young – is lobbying the Government to make heart screening in all young people a requirement by law.
The current Government policy on cardiac screening is that it should not be mandatory.
Mrs Allseybrook said: "It's too late for Steven but if there is a change in the law that saves lives then he and others won't have died in vain."
Research carried out by CRY suggests 12 people, aged 35 or under, die every week in the UK from an undiagnosed heart defect.
The charity says screening could bring that figure down considerably.
Yesterday, Derby's Paralympic star Leon Taylor voiced his support for the campaign as he was "extremely alarmed" at the high death rate.
Mrs Allseybrook said she had not known the figure was as high as it is.
She said: "It's a shocking number. The hard part is that these are healthy people. You can't understand why they die."
Mrs Allseybrook said the moment she and her husband were told of their son's death would haunt them forever.
She said: "My brother phoned me to tell me about Steven. We went numb. We were just in a trance. We packed our cases but I can't remember doing it."
CRY has launched an e-petition calling on the Government to make heart screening compulsory in young people. It currently has over 7,000 signatures.
It says: "Do we want to be a nation that tolerates the deaths of 12 young people a week with nothing being done to try to prevent these tragedies? The Government must immediately and comprehensively review its policy on cardiac screening in young people."
To sign the petition, go to epetitions.direct.gov.uk/ petitions/31819.