Do you know what “happy heart syndrome” means? Because, in reality, it is in our nature to feel all kinds of emotions, not just ecstasy or happiness. This includes everything between these two extremes and the whole range of feelings in the middle, all the way to the other end, even those that many people might think of as negative (but aren’t) like anger, melancholy, or sadness.
From broken heart to happy heart syndrome
Broken heart syndrome, which doctors also call “Takotsubo syndrome” or “stress cardiomyopathy,” happens when a person goes through a sudden, intense stress that can quickly weaken the heart. Ilan Shor Wittstein, MD, director of the Johns Hopkins Advanced Heart Failure Fellowship, says that this can be caused by physical or emotional stress. Physical stress includes things like high fever, heart attacks, seizures, breathing problems, bleeding, or low blood sugar (grief, fear, extreme anger, or surprise). Its symptoms, which are similar to those of a heart attack, are chest pain, shortness of breath, sweating, or feeling dizzy. These symptoms show up minutes or hours after a “traumatic or stressful” event.
Now, let’s look at the other side. You might think that a heart attack can only be caused by a broken or sick heart, but that’s not true. A study from 2022 has just shown that positive emotions can also cause the above things to happen. Scientists have started to call this the “happy heart syndrome,” and it seems to be much more common in men than in women.
What’s the deal with happy heart syndrome?
Thomas Stiermaier, MD, and his research team at University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein in Lübeck, Germany, wrote a report that was just published in the journal JACC: Heart Failure. It showed that in a small group of patients with Takotsubo syndrome, this heart condition was caused by happy events in their lives. This was a pretty big discovery, since scientists usually don’t spend much time looking into the effects of happiness on health.
From a group of almost 2,500 people, 36.7% had an emotional trigger. Of those, almost 94% were affected by broken heart syndrome and only 4% were affected by happy heart syndrome. In fact, they say that this syndrome is rare, making up only 1.5% of all cases of Takotsubo syndrome, and that it is more likely to show up as an abnormal non-apical bulge in the heart (rather than in the heart region).
It can have the same short-term and long-term effects as a broken heart because it is a very similar medical condition. It can cause pulmonary edema, cardiogenic shock, a heart attack, or even death.
How can this condition happen?
It will definitely be triggered by a positive emotion or emotions, and some of the ways it shows up in the real world are:
- chest pain
- Dyspnea (difficulty breathing) (difficulty breathing)
- Changes in the heart’s rhythm
- Changes in how much blood is pushed out of the heart’s left ventricle
There isn’t much more known about this syndrome right now, but it has been described in small-scale studies in the past. But we had to talk to you about this subject so that you could start to control your feelings. It can be just as bad to be too sad as it can be to be too happy or euphoric. Moderation is always helpful and makes the mind and body feel better, don’t you think?
If you are interested
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