Cardiac arrest charity encourages people to get heart screened after schoolboy Samuel Akwasi's death

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By ITV News Central Production Journalist Rachael Lewis

A cardiac arrest charity is encouraging young people to get their hearts screened after a schoolboy from Nottingham died following a football match.

Samuel Akwasi, who was 13-years-old, died in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest on the pitch.

Witnesses said the young footballer, who was playing for his club FC Cavaliers under-13s, collapsed during a game on Saturday at around midday.

According to Cardiac Risk in the Young, every week in the UK, around 12 young people (under the age of 35) die suddenly from a previously undiagnosed heart condition.

80% of these deaths will occur with no prior symptoms.

In an interview with ITV News Central Dr Steven Cox, Chief Executive of Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY), explained why it is so important to identify these conditions early through screenings.

Dr Steven Cox, Chief Executive of Cardiac Risk in the Young explains what symptoms people can look out for

Dr Cox said: "Tragically these conditions are not life style related, we are born with them.

"So often it might be the fittest and healthiest person who suffers a cardiac arrest. This is why it is so unnerving to people."

CRY tests around 32,000 young people across the UK for heart conditions every year.

According to Dr Cox, one in every 300 of these people will be identified with a potentially life- threatening condition.

"When we see these public events they come to the news, because they are witnessed events.

"But every week in the UK there are young people dying suddenly.

Dr Cox continued: "We want every young person to have the opportunity to have their heart checked.

"This requires awareness of symptoms and awareness of proactive ways to reduce the risk"

What are signs of an undiagnosed heart condition?

According to Dr Cox:

  • Exercise related chest pain

  • Passing out during exercise

  • Family history of young sudden death

  • Family history of heart problems

CRY charity perform screenings which are funded by families who have been affected by a young sudden cardiac arrest and are able to diagnose most cardiac abnormalities.

Any person who wants to be screened can go to the CRY website to book a screening. For more information click here