An autopsy has concluded that MMA trainer Shawn Tompkins died of a heart attack, according to his brother-in-law, Sam Stout. Tompkins was married to Stout’s sister Emilie. Stout reported the news to the London Free Press.
Tompkins died in his sleep over the weekend and news of his death broke just before Sunday’s UFC on Versus 5 main card. The autopsy was performed Monday and the family is currently making funeral arrangements for the beloved trainer.
Tompkins trained many fighters over the years, including Stout and Mark Hominick as well as Randy Couture, Vitor Belfort, and Wanderlei Silva. The sudden nature of his death sent a shockwave throughout the MMA community.
[Update] MMAJunkie spoke to Tompkins manager, Gary Ibarra, who said that Tompkins family had a “major history of heart issues.” Ibarra also reported that Tompkins had an enlarged heart and blocked arteries. Both of which confirm the earlier news of a heart attack being the cause of death.
A family history of heart issues is a very important sign when it comes to forecasting heart issues. One of the problems that athletes can face is that often you can be in great physical shape and feel completely normal before having heart issues. While regular physicals, exercise, and medications can help doctors in deterring heart attacks. It is not fail safe, and in the case of athletes, many of the medications issued can cause side effects that can cause you to become ill while training at high levels.
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