health matters

Health Talk: Broken Heart Syndrome

Ever wondered if it’s possible that you could die of a broken heart? It is … whether you’ve received a bad news (most especially death of a loved one) , got rejected by the person you like or have been crushing on, or whatever stressful situation you’re facing right now, you could or might experience this kind of condition called “Broken Heart Syndrome” or otherwise known as “Stress Cardiomyopathy and “Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy.

A broken heart syndrome or Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy is characterized by the weakening of the heart’s left ventricle. This could be misdiagnosed as a heart attack as the test results and symptoms are similar. There’s  good news and bad news about this syndrome: the good one is a broken heart syndrome can be treated well while the bad news is that this condition can lead to severe, short-term heart muscle failure.

This kind of condition may be brought about by the heart’s reaction to a surge of stress hormones. Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy is a temporary heart condition and people who have this may experience sudden chest pains or even think that they have a heart attack. In this stage, a temporary disruption occurs in a person’s normal heart pumping function where as the remainder of the heart normally functions or even contracts more forcefully.

Common symptoms that people with this condition might experience are shortness of breath and chest pain. A sign that a patient with a broken heart syndrome is having a heart attack is usually a long-lasting or persistent chest pain.

What usually causes this kind of condition is unclear to anyone though stress hormones or a temporary constriction of the heart’s small or large arteries may be possible factors. A broken heart syndrome may even be preceded by an intense emotional or physical event such as a frightening medical diagnosis, news of an unexpected death of a loved one, natural disasters, job loss, public speaking, physical stressors (e.g. asthma attack , majory surgery or car accident), divorce, loss of money,  domestic abuse or even a surprise party. Other possible causes of this syndrome are drugs such as Duloxetine,  Levothyroxine, Epinephrine and Venlafaxine.

Women are most likely to experience this heart condition than men do, especially those who are 50 years and above.There are rare cases that a broken heart syndrome is fatal but most people who have or experienced  this condition recover quickly. Some patients with this condition may need or require to have a coronary angiography test done, depending on the doctor’s order.