More than 1,400 DGN students received cardiac screenings

More than 1,400 DGN students received cardiac screenings

North High student Owen Nystrom thanking Drs. Sinno and Marek for putting on the YH4L cardiac screening event.

On Thursday, Feb. 27, 1,405 Downers Grove North High School students were screened through the Young Hearts for Life® (YH4L) Cardiac Screening Program. In addition, more than 100 community members volunteered throughout the day.

“We’re grateful to generous community sponsors for bringing this life-saving program to our students every two years,” Janice Schwarze, principal of North High, said. “And many thanks to Young Hearts for Life for raising awareness and taking action on the important health issue of undetected heart issues in young people.” 

YH4L provides a heart screening called an electrocardiogram (ECG) to identify high school students at risk for sudden cardiac death, and to increase the public's awareness of this issue. Recording the electrical activity of the heart, using electrodes attached to the skin, can detect approximately 60% of the abnormalities or “markers” from these heart conditions that are associated with sudden cardiac death, which a stethoscope cannot detect. 

"Once again, we had another successful screening at DGN,” said Dr. Joseph Marek, Founder & Medical Director of YH4L and Cardiologist at Advocate Medical Group. “Students were identified with potentially life threatening cardiac conditions because of this screening, and parents were notified of next steps. It is because of our generous sponsors and volunteers that we are able to offer this life-saving test."

YH4L is able to provide these screenings free of charge to students with parental permission, thanks to generous sponsors including Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital, just1mike Foundation, Mark Crabtree YH4L Memorial Fund, District 99 Education Foundation, and YH4L Donors.

YH4L visits District 99 every two years as this is the recommendation for regular ECG testing for young adults. YH4L screening was held at South High students in September 2019.

To date, more than 250,000 students have been screened as a result of YH4L. For more information about YH4L, visit