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Broken heart syndrome, also known as a faux heart attack, is a response to physical and emotional stress with all the symptoms of a heart attack without actually being a heart attack. Stressors such as the loss of a loved one, severe migraines, or stroke or asthma flare-ups may precipitate a faux heart attack.
Takotsubo cardiomyopathy, or broken heart syndrome, affects women more often than men. In this video, cardiologis Mary Ann McLaughlin, MD, explains what causes the syndrome and why it's often mistaken for a heart attack.
Broken heart syndrome can be brought on by sudden stress such as the loss of a loved one. The condition is usually temporary and the symptoms are treatable. Symptoms include chest pain caused by the temporary enlargement of the heart.
Broken heart syndrome usually subsides within a week with no residual effects.
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