Is Broken Heart Syndrome Real?


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YES, Broken Heart Syndrome, also called stress-induced cardiomyopathy, can strike even if you're healthy. 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 such as death of a loved one, a divorce or break-up, or even a happy event 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 there's no evidence of blocked heart arteries in broken heart syndrome. In this syndrome, a part of your heart temporarily enlarges and doesn't pump well, while the rest of your heart functions normally or with even more forceful contractions. Researchers are just starting to learn the causes and how to diagnose and treat it.

The bad news is that Broken Heart Syndrome can lead to severe, short term heart muscle failure. The good news is that it's treatable & most recover within weeks.

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