American Heart Association
Many of us have heard stories of people dying from a broken heart. We think of a broken heart in emotional terms after a traumatic event such as the end of a relationship, the loss of a loved one, or even a happy event. Broken heart syndrome is a very real medical condition.
Even if you are healthy, you can suffer from broken heart syndrome, also known as stress-induced cardiomyopathy (heart muscle disease).
Women are more likely than men to suffer from this disease that causes sudden, intense chest pain that can occur as the result of a stressful event – good or bad. Broken heart syndrome can also be mistaken for a heart attack due to similar symptoms.
So, what is broken heart syndrome?
Broken heart syndrome occurs when a part of the heart becomes temporarily enlarged and doesn’t pump well, while the rest of the heart pumps normally or with more forceful contractions.
While broken heart syndrome can lead to severe, long-term heart muscle failure, it is treatable. Most people recover from it within weeks and have a low risk of it happening again. In rare cases, the disease has been fatal.