Hundreds register for free Isle of Man heart screenings

Craig Lunt Craig Lunt died from an undiagnosed heart defect in April 2005

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More than 400 people in the Isle of Man have registered to have their heart screened in Douglas later this month.

The free service is offered by the local charity Craig's Heartstrong Foundation, which has screened more than 4,000 people since 2006.

The charity was set up by Paula Lunt in memory of her son Craig, who died from an undiagnosed heart defect in 2005.

Qualified doctors will test to detect any possible symptoms of hypertonic and dilated cardiomyopathy.

The charity's chairman, Paul Heeley, said: "We are delighted that all 430 places have been taken.

"We have screened more than 4,000 people so far and referred more than 200 of those back to their GP with issues ranging from minor to life changing.

"It is a wonderful opportunity. It only takes a few minutes and is completely pain free."

He added: "It is half an hour of your day which could potentially save your life".

The next screenings, for people between the ages of 14 and 35, will be held at the Sefton Hotel on 24 and 25 August.

The charity was left frustrated in April when more than 50 people failed to turn up for their appointment.

Paula Lunt said it "broke her heart to see such a missed opportunity".

According to Cardiac Risk in the Young (Cry), which helps deliver the screenings, 12 young people in the UK die of undiagnosed heart defects every week.

The charity is currently trying to raise £60,000 to equip all 34 of the island's primary schools with defibrillators, having already supplied 55 to high schools and sports clubs across the island.

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