Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Training in Sport Universities: An Italian Survey


Background: Physical activity is associated to an increased risk of sudden cardiac death (SCD). Together with primary prevention, prompt recognition and early management of SCD are crucial in order to improve survival rate. During their duty, sport trainers and teachers can play a key role in secondary prevention of cardiac arrest provided they have received an appropriate training in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) during their curricular study. This is usually achieved through a Basic life Support and Defibrillation (BLS-D) Course which in Italy formally enables to Automated External Defibrillator (AED) use. Objective: To investigate the presence, the type and the diffusion of cardiopulmonary resuscitation training in Sport and Exercise Sciences Universities in Italy. Design: Descriptive survey research design was adopted for the study. Setting: The study sample consisted of 32 Italian Universities with Bachelor and Master-Level Degrees in Sport and Exercise Sciences. Methods: Teaching secretary or directly deans/ course presidents were contacted by email or telephone in order to collect information on the availability of BLS-D courses for Sport and Exercise Sciences students during the academic year 2010-2011. Results: The compliance to the survey has been >93%. Only a reduced number of the contacted Universities offered dedicated courses of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation with license to Defibrillation according to current local regulation. Conclusion: The described situation shows a limit in the generation of a sport trainers’ category highly specialized in cardiac and respiratory emergencies: only 6 Universities organize BLS-D training with official certification.

Share and Cite:

Scapigliati, A. , Giampaoli, S. , Marsili, A. , Valeriani, F. & Spica, V. (2013). Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Training in Sport Universities: An Italian Survey. Advances in Physical Education, 3, 131-135. doi: 10.4236/ape.2013.33022.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] American College of Sports Medicine, American Heart Association (2007). Exercise and acute cardiovascular events: Placing the risks into perspective. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 39, 886-897. doi:10.1249/mss.0b013e3180574e0e
[2] Batra, A. S., & Balaji S. (2012). Prevalence and spectrum diseases pre disposing to sudden cardiac death: Are they the same for both the athlete and the nonathlete? Pediatric Cardiology, 33, 379-386. doi:10.1007/s00246-012-0159-1
[3] Berdowski, J., Berg, R. A., Tijssen, J. G., & Koster, R. W. (2010). Glo bal incidences of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest and survival rates: Sys tematic review of 67 prospective studies. Resuscitation, 81, 1479-1487. doi:10.1016/j.resuscitation.2010.08.006
[4] Berger, S., Whitstone, B. N., Frisbee, S. J., Miner, J. T., Dhala, A., Pir rallo, R. G. et al. (2004). Cost effectiveness of Project ADAM: A project to prevent sudden cardiac death in high school students. Pe diatric Cardiology, 25, 660-667. doi:10.1007/s00246-003-0668-z
[5] Borjesson, M., & Pelliccia, A. (2009). Incidence and aetiology of sud den cardiac death in young athletes: An international perspective. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 43, 644-648. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2008.
[6] Borjesson, M., Serratosa, L., Carre, F., Corrado, D., Drezner, J., Dug more, D.L. et al. (2011). Consensus document regarding cardiovas cular safety at sports arenas: Position stand from the European Asso ciation of Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation (EACPR), section of Sports Cardiology. European Heart Journal, 32, 2119-2124. doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehr178
[7] Borjesson, M., Urhausen, A., Kouidi, E., Dugmore, D., Sharma, S., Halle, M. et al. (2011). Cardiovascular evaluation of middle-aged/ senior individuals engaged in leisure-time sport activities: Position stand from the sections of exercise physiology and sports cardiology of the European Association of Cardiovascular Prevention and Reha bilitation. European Journal of Cardiovascular Prevention and Re habilitation, 18, 446-458. doi:10.1097/HJR.0b013e32833bo969
[8] Corrado, D., Basso, C., Pavei, A., Michieli, P., Schiavon, M., & Thiene, G. (2006). Trends in sudden cardiovascular death in young competi tive athletes after implementation of a preparticipation screening program. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, 296, 1593-1601. doi:10.1001/jama.296.13.1593
[9] Corrado, D., Basso, C., & Thiene, G. (2012). Sudden cardiac death in athletes: What is the role of screening? Current Opinion in Car diology, 27, 41-48. doi:10.1097/HCO.0b013e32834dc4cb
[10] Corrado, D., Migliore, F., Bevilacqua, M., Basso, C., & Thiene, G. (2009). Sudden cardiac death in athletes: Can it be prevented by screening? Herz, 34, 259-266. doi:10.1007/s00059-009-3236-3
[11] Drezner, J. A., Courson, R. W., Roberts, W. O., Mosesso Jr., V. N., Link, M. S., & Maron, B. J. (2007). Inter-association task force rec ommendations on emergency preparedness and management of sud den cardiac arrest in high school and college athletic programs: A consensus statement. Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine, 17, 87-103. doi:10.1097/JSM.0b013e3180415466
[12] Koster, R. W., Baubin, M. A., Bossaert, L. L., Caballero, A., Cassan, P., Castren, M. et al. (2010). European Resuscitation Council Guide lines for Resuscitation 2010 Section 2. Adult basic life support and use of automated external defibrillators. Resuscitation, 81, 1277-1292. doi:10.1016/j.resuscitation.
[13] Republic of Italy (2012). Law 189, 08.nov.2012. Conversion into law, with amendments, of decree-law of 13 September 2012, n. 158, con taining urgent measures to promote the development of the country by a high level of health protection.
[14] Marijon, E., Tafflet, M., Celermajer, D. S., Dumas, F., Perier, M. C., Mustafic, H. et al. (2011). Sports-related sudden death in the general population. Circulation, 124, 672-681. doi:10.1161/.
[15] Nam, G. B. (2011). Exercise, heart and health. Korean Circulation Journal, 41, 113-121. doi:10.4070/kcj.2011.41.3.113
[16] Salib, E. A., Cyran, S. E., Cilley, R. E., Maron, B. J., Thomas, & N. J. (2005). Efficacy of bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation and out of-hospital automated external defibrillation as lifesaving therapy in commotio cordis. The Journal of Pediatrics, 147, 863-866. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2005.07.041
[17] Solberg, E. E., Embra, B. I., Borjesson, M., Herlitz, J., & Corrado, D. (2011). Commotio cordis—Under-recognized in Europe? A case re port and review. European Journal of Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation, 18, 378-383. doi:10.1177/1741826710389363
[18] Thompson, P. D., Franklin, B. A., Balady, G. J., Blair, S. N., Corrado, D., Estes, N. A. et al. (2007). Exercise and acute cardiovascular events placing the risks into perspective: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association Council on Nutrition, Physical Ac tivity, and Metabolism and the Council on Clinical Cardiology. Cir culation, 115, 2358-2368. doi:10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.107.181485
[19] Webner, D., Duprey, K. M., Drezner, J. A., Cronholm, P., & Roberts, W. O. (2012). Sudden cardiac arrest and death in United States Ma rathons. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 44, 1843-1845.

Copyright © 2024 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.