Racial Disparities in Ion Channelopathies and Inherited Cardiovascular Diseases Associated With Sudden Cardiac Death.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


J Am Heart Assoc, Volume 11, Issue 6, p.e023446 (2022)


Cardiovascular Diseases, Channelopathies, Death, Sudden, Cardiac, Ethnicity, Humans, Racial Groups, United States


<p>Cardiovascular disease (CVD) continues to be the most common cause of death worldwide, and cardiac arrhythmias account for approximately one half of these deaths. The morbidity and mortality from CVD have been reduced significantly over the past few decades; however, disparities in racial or ethnic populations still exist. This review is based on available literature to date and focuses on known cardiac channelopathies and other inherited disorders associated with sudden cardiac death in African American/Black subjects and the role of epigenetics in phenotypic manifestations of CVD, and illustrates existing disparities in treatment and outcomes. The review also highlights the knowledge gaps that limit understanding of the manifestation of phenotypic abnormalities across racial or ethnic groups and discusses disparities associated with device underuse in the management of patients at risk for sudden cardiac death. We discuss factors related to reports in the United States, that the overall mortality attributed to CVD and the number of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests are higher among African American/Black subjects when compared with other racial or ethnic groups. African American/Black subjects are disproportionally affected by CVD, including cardiac arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death, thus highlighting a major concern in this population that remains underrepresented in clinical trials with limited genetic testing and device underuse. The proposed solutions include (1) early identification of genetic variants, which is crucial in tailoring a preventive management strategy; (2) inclusion of diverse racial or ethnic groups in clinical trials; (3) compliance with guideline-directed medical treatment and referral to cardiovascular subspecialists; and (4) training and mentoring of underrepresented junior faculty in cardiovascular health disparities research.</p>

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