In your most happy moment you should note that the heart is also at risk

Emobileclinic Researchers’ corner



In your most happy moment you should note that the heart is at risk according to a recent study. Good news or extremely sudden happy mood can trigger Takotsubo syndrome (TTS). This syndrome used to be associated with grief, anger, fear commonly referred to ‘broken heart syndrome. It is a cause by sudden and temporary weakening of the heart muscles which causes the left ventricle, the heart’s main pumping chamber, to blow out at the bottom and stops pumping.

It usually results to chest pain, breathlessness, heart attack, heart failure or worst case death.” According to the author of the study, the role of positive emotions triggering TTS used to be unclear and her study was able to analyze the prevalence and characteristics of patients with TTS following pleasant events, which are distinct from the stressful or undesirable episodes commonly triggering TTS.

She studied a total number of 1,750 of TTS patients, 485 with a definite emotional trigger. ”We identified a total of 485 with a definite emotional trigger. Of these, 20 patients presented with pleasant preceding events and 465 patients with unequivocal negative emotional events associated with TTS ” said the author. Takotsubo syndrome patients with preceding pleasant events were compared to those with negative emotional triggers from the International Takotsubo Registry and the author interestingly found clinical presentation of patients with ‘happy heart syndrome’ similar to those with the ‘broken heart syndrome’; including symptoms such as chest pain (17/19) vs. (412/457). ‘Similarly, electrocardiographic parameters, laboratory findings, and 1-year outcome did not differ,’ she said.

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She however noted that in a post hoc analysis, a disproportionate higher prevalence of midventricular involvement was observed in ‘happy hearts’ compared with ‘broken hearts’

The researchers concluded that their result illustrated that TTS can be triggered not only negative but also positive life events. While patients’ characteristics were similar between groups, the midventricular TTS type was more prevalent among the ‘happy hearts’ than among the ‘broken hearts’. Presumably, despite their distinct nature, happy and sad life events may share similar final common emotional pathways, which can ultimately trigger TTS.




European Heart Journal, news release


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