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Posted on 1st February 2017

Hundreds unaware they are carrying faulty heart gene

Sudden death and coronary heart disease could be a risk for up to 620,000 people in UK who carry a faulty gene.

The British Heart Foundation said that the figure was 100,000 more than they had originally thought. However, they said there is a better understanding of inherited conditions.

The figure could be higher still as there could still be people who are unware they are carrying the faulty gene, and others that are still undergoing diagnosis.

Undiagnosed heart conditions account for 12 apparently healthy people under the age of 35 in the UK becoming victims of sudden cardiac death.

Research has helped identify many of the faulty genes that cause inherited heart conditions. Those at higher risk of these conditions are offered structured genetic testing. The British Heart Foundation say more research needs to be carried out.

Prof Sir Nilesh Samani, BHF medical director, told the BBC: "The reality is that there are hundreds of thousands of people across the UK who are unaware that they could be at risk of sudden death.

"If undetected and untreated, inherited heart conditions can be deadly and they continue to devastate families, often by taking away loved ones without warning.

"We urgently need to fund more research to better understand these heart conditions, make more discoveries, develop new treatments and save more lives.

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