SUDDEN Project

SUDDEN is a research program investigating out-of-hospital sudden unexpected death (OHSUD) in adults ages 18-64.  Such deaths are a tragically common occurrence: our initial study indicates they may account for 10% of natural deaths. A wide range of causative factors are likely involved:  cardiac arrhythmias, chronic conditions such as hypertension and diabetes, and misuse of prescription and recreational drugs.  SUDDEN aims to better understand such deaths so that pathways to prevention can be developed.

SUDDEN’s pilot dataset captures OHSUD cases for 2013 and 2014 in Wake County, North Carolina, a socioeconomically and ethnically diverse population.  This pilot data includes demographic and medical information on OHSUD cases from a broad array of sources including government agencies, emergency medical services, hospitals, and physicians’ offices. The range of data captured offers an unprecedentedly in-depth view into factors involved in these deaths.  SUDDEN is currently expanding to other counties in North and South Carolina with the goal of having a study cohort fully representative of the nation as a whole.

Prevention of these premature deaths is SUDDEN’s chief aim.  SUDDEN has built relationships with public and private health and community groups to work as partners in both its core research, but also in the development of proactive community health interventions. 

SUDDEN Abstracts

Risk Factor Profile for Out of Hospital Sudden Unexpected Death Varies By Age
Joan Maradey ESC 2016
Joan Maradey presents his abstract at European Society of Cardiology 2016 in Rome, Italy, August 2016.
Seizure and history of alcohol abuse as predisposing factors for out-of-hospital sudden unexpected death 
Sarah Chen EuroPRevent 2016
Sarah Chen presents her abstract at EuroPRevent 2016 in Sophia Antipolis, France, June 2016.

SUDDEN Feature

The SUDDEN project was featured on Endeavors, a website that highlights research and creativity at UNC-Chapel Hill.endeavors graphic
Click here for the full article.