Emotional Upset and Myocardial Infarction: Is There a Link?

On average, AMI over two times more likely in the hour after a bout of intense emotions or activity
On average, AMI over two times more likely in the hour after a bout of intense emotions or activity

HealthDay News — Intense anger or heavy physical exertion may be triggers for an acute myocardial infarction (AMI) in some people, according to research published online October 11 in Circulation.

Researchers asked AMI patients whether they had been angry or emotionally upset in the hour before their episode, or during the same hour the day before. They also asked about heavy physical exertion.

In the study of 12,461 patients in 52 countries, both intense activity and intense emotions each seemed to double the odds of experiencing an AMI in the next hour. That risk rose about three-fold when patients were upset and exerted themselves at the same time. On average, patients were over two times more likely to experience an AMI in the hour after a bout of intense emotions or activity, versus the same hour a day before. About 14% of study participants said they'd either exerted themselves in the hour before their AMI symptoms arose or that they'd been angry or upset (13.6 and 14.4%, respectively).

"Physical exertion and anger or emotional upset are triggers associated with first AMI in all regions of the world, in men and women, and in all age groups, with no significant effect modifiers," the authors conclude.

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