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Broken Heart Syndrome (Stress Cardiomyopathy): What Is This? - Dr. Atiemo

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Dr. Andrew Atiemo describes stress cardiomyopathy, also known as broken heart syndrome. Dr. Atiemo is an experienced cardiologist at Banner Thunderbird Medical Center in Glendale, Arizona.

Dr. Atiemo:
Stress cardiomyopathy is a syndrome, which has been referred to in the literature also as broken heart syndrome or Takotsubo cardiomyopathy. This is a condition in which under stressful situations, particularly emotional stress, there is a temporary weakening of the heart muscle, also known as cardiomyopathy.

In patients who have this syndrome, they can develop severe chest pain, shortness of breath, and other symptoms that mimic having a heart attack. The key to diagnosing this includes getting information about the heart function, such as an echocardiogram to look at the structure of the heart.

In this condition there’s typically a weakening of the very tip of the heart. With coronary angiography we also see that there is an absence of blockage in the coronary arteries. Getting this information helps to exclude other important causes such as severe coronary artery disease.

Perhaps one of the nicest things about treating patients with stress cardiomyopathy is that generally the condition has a very good prognosis. Patients who have this weakening of the heart can see significant improvement over a period of days to weeks.

About Dr. Andrew D. Atiemo, M.D., F.A.C.C.:
Dr. Atiemo is a cardiologist on staff at Banner Thunderbird Medical Center in Glendale, AZ. After completing his medical education at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Atiemo trained in internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a Harvard teaching hospital. His passion for cardiology lead him to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland where he trained in general cardiology and interventional cardiology.

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Condition: Heart Disease, VTE, Deep Venous Thromboembolism, Coronary Artery Disease, Cardiomyopathy, Cardiovascular Disease, Pulmonary Embolism

Related Terms: Interventional Cardiology, Cardiac Support, Chest Pain, Cardiac Catheterization, Stress Test, Weak Heart Muscle, Vascular Trauma, Heart Muscle Inflammation, Blood Clots, Enlarged Heart

Health Care Provider: Banner Hospital, Banner Medical Center, Banner Health, Banner Thunderbird, Banner Thunderbird Medical Center, Banner Thunderbird Hospital

Location: Glendale, Arizona, Phoenix, Tempe, Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Chandler, Surprise, North Phoenix, 85306

Expert: Dr. Andrew Atiemo, Andrew Atiemo, M.D., Dr. Atiemo, Doctor Andrew Atiemo, Cardiologist Andrew Atiemo, M.D.

Expertise: Cardiology, Interventional Cardiology, Heart Catheterization, Balloon Angioplasty, Rheolytic Thrombectomy, AngioJet®, Acute Coronary Syndromes, Preventive Cardiology, Stress Cardiomyopathy


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