Banner Health Medical Experts Say Your Broken Heart this Valentine’s Day Could Actually be a Syndrome


Emotional stress and your heart health have been linked to Broken Heart Syndrome, which leaves some experiencing symptoms like those of a heart attack.

The official term of the diagnosis is Takosubo syndrome or stressed induced cardiomyopathy. It can be triggered by physical or emotional stress. What happens is that broken heart syndrome causes your heart’s main pumping chamber to temporarily enlarge and pump blood poorly. This can leave you feeling short of breath and with chest pains.

One patient, Martha Castillo, lost both her parents within two months, landing her in the hospital after a rapid decline in her health. Yet despite her shortness of breath and chest pains, she did not have a heart attack, but had Heart Break Syndrome. Catillo said of her experience, that “Little did [she] know that the sadness could physically affect [her] heart.”

Dr. Roderick Tung, cardiologist at Banner-University Medicine Heart Institute, says Broken heart syndrome highlights the intricate connection between the heart and brain, underscoring the importance of seeking medical help for cardiac symptoms like chest pain or difficulty breathing.