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Sadness associated with increased risk of death in patients with heart failure

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Grief associated with increased risk of death among heart failure patients

According to a recent study, heart failure patients suffering from the grief associated with losing a loved one had a 5% to 20% increased risk of dying from heart failure over the next four years. Photos by StockSnap / pixabay

Can someone really die with a broken heart?

If the person is serious Heart diseaseA new Swedish study suggests that the answer may be yes.

After analyzing about 30 years of data on about 500,000 heart failure patients, researchers found that people suffering from the sadness of losing a loved one had a 5% to 20% increased risk of heart death. I concluded that I did. Failure for the next four years.

The findings may call for increased attention from family, friends, and physicians, especially for survivors with heart failure shortly after loss, said study author Krisztina László. She is an associate professor at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Faculty of Global Public Health.

heart failure“It’s a progressively worsening chronic disease in which the heart muscle is unable to pump enough blood to meet the body’s blood and oxygen needs,” László explained.

Her team said it estimates that more than 64 million men and women worldwide are suffering from the disease.

In this study, researchers focused on health and bereaved data on more than 500,000 patients collected by the Swedish Heart Failure Registry between 2000 and 2018. We also reviewed medical information for patients with heart failure collected by Swedish patients. Please register between 1987 and 2018.

The patient was born in Sweden at some point after 1931, and many were middle-aged or older.

In the end, nearly 59,000 patients (12%) lost their loved ones. The team then found that the risk of fatal heart failure was significantly increased, depending on the relationship between the heart failure patient and the dead.

For example, losing a husband, wife, or partner increases the risk of death from heart failure by 20%, losing a brother or sister increases the risk by 13%, and losing a child or grandchild increases it by 10%. Increased by% and 5%, respectively.

However, spikes are much higher than spikes immediately after loss, and within 7 days of losing a loved one, the overall risk (average) increased by 78%, the study authors say.

By relationship, the loss of a child increased the risk by 31% in the first week, and the loss of a spouse or partner increased by 113%.

And losing two loved ones was worse than losing one.

However, the research team identified one major exception to the rule. It’s about losing a parent. No increased risk of death was observed among patients with heart failure after losing either their mother or father.

“In the old age of our cohort members, parental death is in line with lifecycle expectations, as it may reflect the fact that the patient himself was not particularly young, according to László. There is a possibility”.

Researchers have acknowledged that other genetic and lifestyle factors may play a role in what would otherwise explain the overall increased risk.

Still, the “stress-related mechanism” is a possible explanation for why serious loss seems to lead to greater vulnerabilities to heart failure, László said.

Indeed, researchers have stated that the increased risk of death may be rooted in complex methods of the body. Neuroendocrine system When Sympathetic nervous systemAbove all, it reacts to very stressful emotional events.

The findings were reported online on Wednesday in Journal JACC: Heart Failure.

Identifying the link between mourning and the dynamics of heart failure is one thing. Finding a way to prevent it is another thing, Dr. Maya Gugulin warned. She chairs the Heart Failure and Transplant Division of the American College of Cardiology.

“(I) don’t know how to mitigate it,” Gugulin said. One possibility is that it is a beta blocker that is usually prescribed to lower blood pressure. That’s because extreme emotional or physical stress triggers a hormonal “fight or flight” response. Beta blockers may be one way to curb the process, Guglin explained.

Dr. Greg Fonarrow is the director of the Armandson Cardiomyopathy Center at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Although not involved in the study, Fonarow said before the Swedish study that “many general population studies have shown that the death of a spouse or other relatives is associated with increased mortality. Showed. “

But he added that none of these previous studies focused solely on patients with heart failure.

Looking to the future, Fonalow said, “Further research is needed to determine if providing enhanced support to patients with heart failure who have lost relatives can mitigate this increased risk.” Said.

For more information

More about heart failure Centers for Disease Control and Prevention..

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