3 Mar 2016

Being too Happy Could Give You a Heart Attack

Too much happiness could trigger a heart attack, a new study has found. Scientists have long known that extreme emotional distress can cause a potentially fatal weakening of the heart.

But new research has discovered that the same can occur from sheer joy, leading scientists to coin it 'happy heart syndrome'.

Takotsubo syndrome, or TTS, was diagnosed in the 1990s and typically occurs after upsetting episodes such as the death of a spouse or parent, the breakdown of a relationship, or being diagnosed with cancer.

But the new research came after researchers analysed data from 1,750 patients diagnosed with TTS in nine different countries.

Of 485 patients for whom definite emotional trigger could be identified, 96% had suffered sad and stressful events such as the loss of a loved one, attending a funeral, being hurt in an accident, or experiencing an illness or relationship problems.

One obese patient was stricken after getting stuck in the bath.

But in the case of the remaining 20 individuals, heart damage appeared to have been triggered by happy occasions including a birthday party, wedding, surprise celebration, the birth of a grandchild, or a favourite rugby team winning a game.

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