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Broken Heart Syndrome Symptoms – Is Broken Heart Syndrome Real?

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Broken Heart Syndrome Symptoms

Broken Heart Syndrome?

If you’ve ever had your heart broken (and who hasn’t?), then you know that the physical pain from it is very real. But did you know that broken heart syndrome is an actual thing? That it can actually damage your heart, depending on its severity and cause (and other risk factors per individual)?

While being hurt by a loved one, losing a loved one, being dumped by someone does indeed hurt. Sometimes that hurt can be so intense that it can actually cause physical harm to your body.

During a particularly low period in my life I can attest to the truth of this.

So what is broken heart syndrome?

Put simply, broken heart syndrome is a temporary heart condition that is brought on by a stressful situation. This can include the death of a loved one, but it can also include a severe emotional trauma caused by a signifigant other.

The person experiencing this syndrome may have sudden chest pain that mimics a heart attack. When this occurs there is a temporary disruption of your heart’s normal pumping function while the rest of your heart continues to function normally – but often with more forceful contractions.

They believe this is caused by a surge of stress hormones. It is completely treatable and typically will reverse itself in about a week.

Broken heart syndrome symptoms can include chest pain and shortness of breath. If these symptoms persist it is vital that you call 911 and seek help.

The catalyst to this syndrome is usually evident to the person experiencing it. You know when your heart hurts over a loved one, right? I sure did. It’s believed that adrenaline may temporarily damage the heart of some people, but they aren’t completely clear on why or how. They think a temporary constriction of the large or small arteries of the heart may be why.

Some Possible Triggers for Broken Heart Syndrome

BHS if often preceded by an intense physical or emotional trauma. These can include:

– an unexpected death of a loved one
– domestic abuse
– the loss of a considerable amount of money
– a scary medical diagnosis
– natural disasters
– performing live
– losing a job
– divorce
– a breakup
– asthma attack
– car accident
– major surgery

They also believe that it’s possible that some drugs may cause broken heart syndrome by producing the same result of a release of stress hormones. Some of these drugs include:
– Epinephrine
– Duloxetine
– Venlafaxine
– Levothyroxine

Even though symptoms of broken heart syndrome can appear to be a heart attack, there are some clear distinctions between the two. Heart attacks are typically caused by a complete blockage of a heart artery. Whereas with broken heart syndrome patients, heart arteries are not blocked. Blood flow may reduced, but there is no blockage.

Interestingly, but not surprisingly, BHS affects women far more frequently than men.

But enough about the facts. I want to hear from you. Obviously, you are reading this post because you believe you are suffering from broken heart syndrome. Being someone who has, I know first hand how frightening it can be. Though my symptoms never forced me to hospital
, I did experience a severity so great that I truly could feel my heart weakened.

I can attest that these symptoms are temporary and do right themselves after a time. But the release of the stress hormones and what they are capable of doing to the body is astonishing and quite scary.

The best thing, if your symptoms are not requiring a doctors invervention, is to distract yourself enough to let the intensity pass. Talking with someone is one of the best ways, as is distracting yourself with exercise, work, hobbies and being around friends.

In a moment of crisis, however, this can be impossible. It is no different than when you experience a heart attack, actually. And in those moments, you are only concerned with and consumed by the scary feelings in that moment.

But if you have confirmed that it isn’t a heart attack, or you just know based on what caused the symptoms in the first place, then I think you will be relieved to know that you will be okay.

Please leave me a comment or contact me personally here if you would like to speak to me directly.

Let time heal your heart, you are a strong and resilient person. This too shall pass. I assure you. I’ve been there and I know first hand. In my darkest hour I never thought I’d see light again. But I did, and so will you!

Your Friend,


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