Medical history

It is vital that a clear medical history of the victim and his or her death is established, using the family’s and friends’ recollections as well as the reports of the coroner, pathologist, GP and police.

For example, fits brought on by exercise can be due to an underlying channelopathy such as LQTS or CPVT, or a sudden cardiac death during sleep may have been caused by sodium channel LQTS or Brugada Syndrome.

It is also important to find out about any medications and any potentially dangerous drugs that the person may have taken before they died. Your doctor may ask you if you have ever had symptoms such as blackouts or palpitations as these may suggest underlying heart disease.