For a child that is confirmed by genetic testing to have an inherited form of cardiomyopathy, a screening ECG and echocardiogram may be recommended for parents and siblings. If these initial screening exams are normal, your cardiologist may still advise you and your family to be screened again. It is possible to inherit a disease-causing gene but not show signs of the disease until later in life. If additional family members are found to have cardiomyopathy, screening outside of the immediate family (grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins) may be recommended.
For children without symptoms but with a family history of cardiomyopathy (i.e. diagnosed parent or sibling), an echocardiogram and EKG should be scheduled every one to three years before age 12, and then more frequently from age 12 to 21. If by early adulthood there is no evidence of cardiomyopathy, it is unlikely that the condition will develop. Certain individuals may be advised to continue screening every five years past age 21 if late onset has occurred in their family. These screening guidelines may be adjusted on an individual basis by your cardiologist.