Sunday, January 8, 2017
'Broken Heart Syndrome' !!! Is It Real??
The condition can also be triggered by a serious physical illness or surgery. People with broken heart syndrome may have sudden chest pain or think they are having a heart attack. Women are more likely than men to experience the sudden, intense chest pain — the reaction to a surge of stress hormones — that can be caused by an emotionally stressful event. It could even happen after a good shock (like winning the lottery.)
Broken heart syndrome may be misdiagnosed as a heart attack because the symptoms and test results are similar. In fact, tests show dramatic changes in rhythm and blood substances that are typical of a heart attack. But unlike a heart attack, there’s no evidence of blocked heart arteries in broken heart syndrome.
1. Chest pain
2. Shortness of breath
3. Arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats) or cardiogenic shock.
The exact cause of broken heart syndrome is unclear. Researchers are just starting to learn the causes, and how to diagnose and treat it. Some potential triggers of broken heart syndrome are:
- News of an unexpected death of a loved one
- A frightening medical diagnosis
- Domestic abuse
- Losing — or even winning — a lot of money
- Strong arguments
- A surprise party
- Having to perform publicly
- Job loss
- Physical stressors, such as an asthma attack, a car accident or major surgery
Heart attack and broken heart syndrome: What’s the difference?
Some signs and symptoms of broken heart syndrome differ from those of heart attack. In broken heart syndrome, symptoms occur suddenly after extreme emotional or physical stress. Here are some other differences:
- EKG (a test that records the heart’s electric activity) results don’t look the same as the EKG results for a person having a heart attack.
- Blood tests show no signs of heart damage.
- Tests show no signs of blockages in the coronary arteries.
- Tests show ballooning and unusual movement of the lower left heart chamber (left ventricle).
- If your doctor thinks you have broken heart syndrome, you may need coronary angiography, a test that uses dye and special X-rays to show the insides of your coronary arteries. Other diagnostic tests are blood tests, EKG, echocardiography (a painless test that uses sound waves to create moving pictures of your heart) and cardiac MRI.
There is no standard treatment for broken heart syndrome. Treatment is similar to that of a heart attack until the diagnosis is clear.
Many patients make a full recovery within a month or so. Ask your doctor how long you will need to continue taking these medications once you recover, as most can be stopped within three to six months.
There is a small chance that broken heart syndrome can happen again after the first episode. There is no proven therapy to prevent additional episodes.
Many doctors recommend long-term treatment with some medications that block the potentially damaging effects of stress hormones on the heart. Recognising and managing stress in your life may also be important in helping to prevent broken heart syndrome, though there's currently no evidence to prove this.