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Heart Attack or Broken Heart Syndrome

Updated on February 7, 2010


Trying to find a cause to my wife's recent incident (Thursday Jan.7) with her heart and not being convinced by the Dr of Cardiology at our hospital, my step daughter decided to do some research of her own and we found some interesting facts, that may lead us to a more convincing explanation.

Dr's, no matter where you are on this planet will only go with what they know, and will basically give you an interpretation rounded down to the best case scenario. They usually lump you in with the majority and treat the illness with a barrage of medications or treatments and unless you press them for something more you are left with what they give you. A lot of times you may have a Dr who is not keen on your investigation because he wants you to trust his "judgement" and his "assessment" of you and not you. What do you's only your body, right? Not according to them.

Presently in Canada we have a patient to Dr ratio that is overwhelming. So that means you have little time for them to have any real interest in you. You are lucky if you can get their attention for 60 seconds, because after 10 seconds of your conversation he has turned you off and gone down the rabbit trail of wherever and comes back at you with, "have this test or take this drug, make a new appointment in 2 weeks and lets go from there." They all have either a 14 or 30 day rule, and you are at their mercy. Do they have a clue as to what medicine or treatment will work for you? No, it's all trial and error. Ever have a mechanic like that? The replacement of a $10 part has just cost you $300.

With any Dr, you could be dead within the month, due to a reaction to the drug or a worsened condition. That's no problem for them, because there is a long line waiting to take your place and you are quickly forgotten.

You come back through their turnstile, punch your medical card at the desk, take a seat in the crammed room of wall to wall people all waiting for the same time slot you have, read a magazine that is at least 4 years old and half worn out, listen to somebody grunting, or coughing, or complaining. If there is a TV, it's preset to CNN with no sound and so you look about the room where all stare blankly at the screen with a look of sheer panic on their faces. If we are fortunate enough to get in and out within 2 hours we say we're blessed.

Here's some brief info, just google: broken heart syndrome.

Broken Heart Syndrome is the nickname for Stress Cardiomyopathy also known as Tokatsubo Cardiomyopathy.

"Researchers at John Hopkins hospital in Baltimore have found that emotional trauma can result in the release of hormones that can "stun" the heart, mimicking the symptoms of a heart attack. Stress cardiomyopathy or "broken heart syndrome", has been observed primarily among women who have undergone extreme stress such as the death of a loved one or a car accident."

The above brief article was taken from:

This syndrome affects women over 50 who are postmenopausal and have no history of heart disease.

See also:   (broken heart syndrome in search field)

It was first discovered by Dr's in Japan in 1991. Those who experience the sympoms of this syndrome have chest pain, shortness of breath, fluid in the lungs and heart failure. the heart's ability to pump is severely impaired, but the heart tissue itself is not damaged as in a heart attack. They recovered quickly from their attacks, which had been preceded by intense emotional events. (Dr. Hunter Champion, and IIan Wittstein, John Hopkins Hospital)

See also:

A Clinical Article for Critical Care Nurses:

We will resume our personal research and confront the Dr in a months time. Part of the problem with this syndrome is the tests necessary should to be done at the exact time of the occurrance, because the heart recharges itself so quickly shortly after the events. The heart attack happened on Thursday, early AM and by Monday the echocardiogram showed no damage to the heart! Go figure!


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    • Saintatlarge profile imageAUTHOR

      Saint Lawrence 

      6 years ago from Canada

      Hi Carol, sorry you had to go through all this, but now you have the advantage of keeping track of what stresses you and how to manage it.

      Since this last episode my wife has de-stressed her life and tries to not take everything so seriously... and it has worked. Be blessed, and laugh at life. Thx for stopping by. L.

    • profile image

      carol Almanza 

      6 years ago

      I was in the hospial last year and was told that I had a heart attack..Well I sought a second opinion from another cardiologist and he said I did not have a heart attack. I saw him today and he said I had Tokatsubo. I did not remember having any stress, but having spent 9 days in the hospital and a 30,000 bill I was quite upset which should have given me a heart attack. I'm glad for the advice

    • skye2day profile image


      8 years ago from Rocky Mountains

      Hi saintatlarge, I have not read part one I will go do that. Go figure. God is good. He is the Great Physician. He heals the blind, he repairs broken hearts, stressed hearts, heart attacks. He is the one true way. He is our hope and our glory. See you at part one.

      Hugs+ + +

    • Papa Sez profile image

      Papa Sez 

      8 years ago from The Philippines to Canada

      I agree wholeheartedly, we should LOL some more. Best regards to you and your wife. Cheers!

    • Saintatlarge profile imageAUTHOR

      Saint Lawrence 

      8 years ago from Canada

      Thank you Papa Sez for stopping by. Encouragement is always welcomed. Laughter is a great stress reliever, so we should all laugh more.

    • Papa Sez profile image

      Papa Sez 

      8 years ago from The Philippines to Canada

      Yes, I believe stress can do all these and worse. I hope you both take these things as lightly as possible...well, that's better said than done. But at least be conscious about what stress can do to men and women alike.

      Good luck with your nomination.

    • Saintatlarge profile imageAUTHOR

      Saint Lawrence 

      8 years ago from Canada

      Thank you and thank you.

      1)for visiting

      2)that someone thought this info valuable.

      We all underestimate the levels of stress we undergo and take for granted as we age how this builds and if we do not have stress relievers we suffer.

      Interesting that it was first discovered in Japan among women there.

    • ripplemaker profile image

      Michelle Simtoco 

      8 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Oh this is truly something new for me. I loved the information. And yes, this hub has been nominated in the Hubnuggets! Congratulations!!!

      To see the Hubnuggets, do click this link and you will see for yourself!

      Join the Hubnugget fun!

    • shazwellyn profile image


      8 years ago from Great Britain

      Well I have always said that psychological issues can have an impact on the physical! Why oh why does the medical profession not take a holistic view of people? For example, 9/10 cancer patients I have taken to their treatments (I volunteer for the Red Cross and the Ambulance Service) have had a truamatic experience between 1 - 2 years previous - death of a loved one, bankrupsy, marriage split etc.

      Medics are forever treating the symptom and not the cause.

      Nice hub.. you get my vote! x

    • Saintatlarge profile imageAUTHOR

      Saint Lawrence 

      8 years ago from Canada

      Laura, yes the stress issues come in all forms and can build and hit us like a freight train.

      i Pray all is well now.

      Thx for visiting

    • Laura in Denver profile image

      Laura Deibel 

      8 years ago from Aurora

      Thanks for your hub!

      My divorce was so stressful I felt I had constant heart issues for a period of over a year. Always felt short of breath, anxious, etc. I even hyperventillated a few times which I had never done before.

      Beta blocker helped quite a bit. But moreso just putting this *bad* memory in the past helped. Also, realizing that much was precipitated by the voracious divorce industry which thouroughly enjoys devouring people and then spitting them out.

    • Saintatlarge profile imageAUTHOR

      Saint Lawrence 

      8 years ago from Canada

      Thank you Denize and Tammy for stopping by and for your input and if there was some help here all the better.

      Health and happiness to you both.

    • profile image

      Tammy Lochmann 

      8 years ago

      Good research we had a case of Tokatsubo last week. Her cardiac enzymes went up and they performed a cardiac catheterization and her coronary attires were clean as a whistle. This is not an unusual occurrence. But stress reduction techniques and support are imperative as muscle damage to the heart can be done.

      Very good informative hub. Cogratulations on your Hubnugget Wannabe nomination.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      God bless you for posting this informative Hub. I have an appt. tomorrow; have been treating with cardiac issues since June - not yet resolved - with two inpatient stays, and many tests. Tomorrow they will decide whether or not I need a pacemaker - I - lost so much over the past two years - 3 immediate family members in one year. The worst my 29 year old son - who was only 29. I am jotting notes down - and have always advocated for my own health issues. Thank you again.


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