Also known as takotsubo cardiomyopathy or stress-induced cardiomyopathy, broken heart syndrome occurs when a person experiences acute stress, which then leads to rapid and reversive heart muscle weakness. It is a temporary heart condition that’s triggered by stressful events and emotions.
Broken heart syndrome is attributed to two types of stress i.e. emotional and physical stress. It can either be brought on by grief, extreme anger, fear and other extreme emotions, or can occur due to physical stressors such as a serious physical illness or surgery.
Experts believe that the heart is responsive to stress hormones, which makes it beat faster than usual. That said, when you’re anxious or heart broken, your body releases these hormones in excess, which in turn pressures the heart even more, interrupting its ability to properly pump blood. Such overstimulation of the heart is what may lead to a stress cardiomyopathy.