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Health / Young people encouraged to think about signing up for free heart screenings

A MAN who unexpectedly had heart irregularities picked up in a free screening in Lerwick last year is encouraging young people to sign up for the same tests this summer.

Aaron Smith, who had no symptoms or underlying health conditions, underwent further investigations after the screening last year.

The 29-year-old said while nothing major has been picked up, he is due another check-up later this year.

More than 200 people attended the inaugural heart screening event for young people in Shetland last year, and it is set to return on 3 and 4 June.

Heart screening event proves a big success – and will return next year

The screenings are organised and funded through local group Shetland Heart Screening, and provided by the charity Cardiac Risk in the Young.

An online booking page for the 2023 screenings will go live at 4pm on Wednesday 26 April. There will be 200 spaces, and the age range is for 14 to 35 year olds.

Smith, a joiner and a keen football player, said he managed to get a cancellation appointment last year.

He decided to sign up as he is a father of two young children.

“I thought what’s the worst that could happen, at least it would be peace of mind,” Smith added.

“Then they told me I had irregularities and I’d have to get further testing. I wasn’t expecting it.”

During the screening a non-invasive ECG (electrocardiogram) test will take place, which may pick up some conditions. However, it will not detect things like anomalous coronary arteries and premature coronary artery disease.

Details for signing up to the 2023 heart screenings will be made available in due course on social media.

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