Broken Heart Syndrome

Broken heart syndrome is a real phenomenon, and affects mostly women. According to the Cleveland Clinic (2021), this syndrome can occur when one is under sudden physical or emotional stress that can mimic the signs and symptoms of a heart attack.

Although, there maybe a rapid weakening of your heart muscle, it is a temporary, reversible condition and recovery is fast. Individuals many experience shortness of breathe, chest pain, sweating, and restlessness. Testing will reveal no blocked arteries, or permanent heart damage.

Examples of sudden emotional stress that can bring on broken heart syndrome include grief from the death of a loved one and other large or meaningful loss (eg, divorce/relationship, job, home, money, good news (e.g., surprise parties, winning the lottery), bad news, intense fear or extreme anger (Cleveland Clinic, 2021).

Examples of sudden physical stress that could bring on broken heart syndrome include severe pain, exhausting physical event, an asthma attack, difficulty breathing , seizure, stroke, high fever, low blood sugar, blood loss, or surgery (Cleveland Clinic, 2021).

For more information regarding broken heart syndrome see the article below.


Cleveland Clinic, (2021). Broken Heart Syndrome. Retrieved from

Published by Dr. Marilyn Crosby, PhD, MBA, MSN RN

I am an registered nurse with a variety of nursing experience in many areas of healthcare, including critical care, research, program management, quality, and complementary care. I have a passion for "all things related to health & wellness" and want to share pertinent information. Stay Well!

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