Saturday, February 11, 2012
Broken Heart Syndrome
Broken heart syndrome -- not just an invention of romance novelists. Takotusbo cardiomyopathy, or sudden heart failure linked to extreme stress, is also known as broken heart syndrome and is most prevalent in post-menopausal women. The heart receives a flood of stress hormones that causes ballooning of the left ventricle, chest pains, shortness of breath, and an irregular heartbeat. An especially stressful physical or emotional situation, such as a traumatic injury or the sudden death of a family member, can set off an attack.
Richard and I have joked that we want to die at the same moment at the age of 90 while scuba diving of Grand Cayman Island. Neither one of us wants to survive the other for very long. What follows is a sad-sweet story of a long-term partners who died minutes apart from each other.
The cause of the death of bereaved longtime spouses, the study found, can be a condition known as takotusbo cardiomyopathy or sudden heart failure linked to an emotional experience. Some experts have dubbed the condition 'broken heart syndrome.'"