Answers to Athletes and Sudden Cardiac Arrest

Premier Health providers and athletic trainers answer frequently asked questions about sudden cardiac arrest.

How frequent is commotio cordis in athletics?

Dr. Jeffrey Rayborn discusses the risks of commotio cordis occurring in high school and college athletics.  Click play to watch the video or read the transcript.


Commotio cordis is a relatively rare event. There's a registry that started several years ago, and only 180 to 200 cases have been documented. That number is thought to be relatively low due to episodes being unreported or not knowing the cause of the event. Although it is rare, the risk of commotio cordis is higher in sports such as baseball, softball, martial arts. It can also occur in lacrosse, hockey, football and virtually any other sport.

Chelsea L. Gilliam, APRN-CNP, AGACNP-BC

Piqua Family Practice

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Source: Michael W. Barrow, MD, Samaritan North Family Physicians; American Heart Association; National Institutes of Health; Nik Berger, MS, AT, ATC, Premier Health Sports Medicine – Miami Valley Hospital South; Jeffrey James, DO, Premier Orthopedics; Sean Convery, MD, Premier Orthopedics; Jeffrey Rayborn, MD, Premier Orthopedics