About Beat SCAD

Beat SCAD is a patient-led charity that aims to raise awareness of SCAD, support SCAD patients and their families and raise funds for research into the condition. Our mission is threefold: Awareness, Support and Research.

We want to:

  • Raise awareness of SCAD among medical professionals and those who have had a SCAD diagnosis
  • Provide support for SCAD patients as well as family and friends
  • Raise funds for research


Many medical professionals only come across SCAD in medical textbooks. We want to increase awareness among care-givers, including GPs, nurses, cardiologists, cardiac rehab teams, paramedics, midwives and more. We also want to increase awareness and understanding of the condition among SCAD patients, their family and friends and the general population. We believe increased awareness will lead to earlier diagnosis and better outcomes for SCAD patients.


For patients diagnosed with a rare or under-diagnosed condition, talking to and meeting someone who has ‘been there’, whether in person or online, is an important element in their recovery. For families of these patients, it’s often hard to understand the condition and the physical and psychological effects it can have. We hope this website will be a valuable source of support for anyone affected by SCAD.


We work closely with the Leicester Biomedical Research Centre at Glenfield Hospital, which is the leading centre of excellence for SCAD in the UK. Funds we raise will be used to support research into the condition. The SCAD research project was initiated by a pro-active patient group. Watch the video below to find out more.

In 2020 we celebrated our fifth anniversary – have a look at this video for a summary of our first five years!

Click the images below for more information.

Our story

Beat SCAD is, quite literally, a charity of the heart. The work of the charity is from the heart, and for the heart.

Beat SCAD co-founders Rebecca Breslin, Debbie Oliver and Karen Rockell first met via online forum in 2012 after each had experienced an unexpected heart attack due to SCAD (in 2012, 2010 and 2011, respectively). Very little was known about SCAD at that time and each were told by their respective cardiologists that what happened to them was very rare and they were unlikely to meet another person who had experienced SCAD. Searches of medical literature brought little understanding of SCAD and heightened fears given that most case studies were fatalities with SCAD identified at autopsy.

Social media enabled SCAD survivors to find one another and share their stories. As the patient group grew, it became apparent that the majority of cardiologists around the world were giving incorrect information to SCAD patients – however, it was generally the information available to them via medical literature, as individual case studies and in the absence of any SCAD-specific guidelines.

SCAD patients found themselves at risk of receiving inappropriate treatment and inaccurate advice because, in the setting of an acute coronary syndrome (ACS), healthcare professionals would apply the standard protocols of care for atherosclerotic heart disease (the build-up of fatty deposits in the arteries) – but SCAD is a different cause of ACS, the blockage is not an atheroma (cholesterol-lipid-calcium plaque) but a bruise or a tear. It was essential for this to change to improve the outcomes for SCAD patients.

The Beat SCAD charity came to be as a result of the unmet needs, passion, and drive of the SCAD community who felt compelled to raise awareness and develop knowledge of SCAD, support each other and ultimately help to save lives.

Beat SCAD officially launched on 7 November 2015 when the charity held the first UK SCAD conference, bringing together the community of SCAD patients and families with Dr David Adlam and his research team from Glenfield Hospital, Leicester.

Beat SCAD is run by a small team of trustees, all volunteers, and is dependent on the generosity of our supporters volunteering their time, skills, knowledge and enthusiasm to continue pushing forward with our mission.

Medical information on this site has been obtained from the researchers at Glenfield Hospital.

Click here to view our information on the Charity Commission website.

Beat SCAD Charity Number: 1164066

Beat SCAD brand guidelines and logo usage

The Beat SCAD brand and logo are important to the charity and its supporters, so we protect them from being used incorrectly or inappropriately.

You may be able to use the logo if you are fundraising for Beat SCAD or you have an official relationship with us.

Click here for more details. 

Beat SCAD is a member of Genetic Alliance