Colorado - The heart of the matter
the hcm act will help identify Cardiac Health issues in patients with a spectrum of Diseases including Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
Sudden cardiac death (SCD) is a sudden, unexpected death caused by loss of heart function (sudden cardiac arrest). Sudden cardiac death is the largest cause of natural death in the United States, causing about 325,000 adult deaths in the United States each year.
Multiple conditions and risks can make children prone to sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) or sudden cardiac death (SCD) as well as other complications of heart disease. To date, the focus has mainly been only on screening student-athletes.
The total population in the state of Colorado is over 5.8 million people. Approximately 21.5% of this population are children. To view the full report on the prevalence of cardiac disorders in the state of Colorado: Click Here
Hear from Colorado state constituents - We are more than numbers:
Doctors had always given one explanation or another for her symptoms, but nothing related to her heart.
Heather Wartenberg had many syncope episodes (fainting/passing out) over the years, starting when she was a teenager. Doctors had always given one explanation or another, but nothing related to her heart. In 1998, at 21 years old, her syncope episodes became more frequent. She attributed it to stress, work, being a single mom and going to school. One morning, when she was clocking into work, she passed out again. She worked at a doctor's office at the time and recalls that she just wanted to keep working, that she needed to make money to support her daughter and herself, but they insisted she go to the emergency room immediately.
At the hospital she was diagnosed with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) and was told she needed a myectomy (open heart surgery). She was admitted and scheduled for surgery only 2 days after being diagnosed. Heather was terrified, everything was happening so quickly, and her biggest concern was who would take care of her daughter.
Adam Wodon was aware of heart disease in his family but had always attributed it to their lifestyle choices (smoking, diet, alcohol, etc.). His father had survived a heart attack at the age of 53. His mother passed away from symptoms he suspects may have been heart-related that finally “caught up to her.” Adam, now 52 years old, had always led a more active lifestyle and even followed up regularly with different cardiologists to “stay on top of it.” He never smoked, he wasn’t one to drink alcohol, and he golfed and played basketball and hockey. He had often wondered if he just wasn’t in the best shape as he would occasionally get winded and experience some lightheadedness with exertion. A doctor checked his lung function, and he was advised all was fine.
Adam moved from the east coast to Denver, Colorado, in January of 2022. He had had some near-fainting episodes the summer prior, and his cardiologist on the east coast couldn’t find anything wrong. In February 2022, Adam established care with a cardiologist in Colorado. After some testing, the new cardiologist said he had Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM). “Even good cardiologists can miss it,” said Adam, but he is glad this new cardiologist was able to find it. He was assured that the HCM was not due to lifestyle; it was genetic. He had just played hockey the day before his diagnosis, and he now thinks that all his activities before the diagnosis could have put him at risk.
There are approximately 89,000 constituents per EACH House Member's district in Colorado. Up to 2,900 Colorado of these constituents are potentially affected with cardiac disorders, with up to 450 having Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy*
There are up approximately 165,000 constituents per EACH State Senator's district in Colorado. Like Heather and Adam, 5,400 of these constituents are potentially affected with cardiac disorders, with up to 830 having Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy*
Help save us now:
One of the cardiac disorders in the spectrum is Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy which is often misdiagnosed or worse yet - overlooked until it is too late.
HCM and many other cardiac diseases run in families.
Please, listen to our patient stories, and take action to support the HCM Act. Draft legislation is available for review: https://4hcm.org/health-cardiac-monitoring-act/