Posts Tagged ‘stress’

Astounding Percentage of Heart Failure Patients Suffer Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Stress & Heart Attack RiskAn alarming percentage of people who suffer heart attacks or other acute coronary events, one in eight, experience clinically significant symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which grave physical or personal harm occurred or was threatened to occur. Post-traumatic stress disorder, usually, associated with military personal after war or sexual assault victims, is now being referenced for heart failure patients.

Each year, about 1.4 million people in the United States experience an acute coronary syndrome (ACS), a condition brought about by sudden reduced blood flow to the heart. The most common symptom prompting diagnosis of ACS is chest pain, often radiating of the left arm or angle of the jaw, pressure-like in character, and associated with nausea and sweating. Numerous small studies have suggested that ACS-induced PTSD is common and can have serious health consequences, but its prevalence is not known.

To understand the severity of the problem, the first combined review, or meta-analysis, of clinical studies of ACS-induced PTSD was recently conducted. The 24 studies in the meta-analysis included a total of 2,383 ACS patients from around the globe.

The research conducted suggests that clinically significant PTSD symptoms induced by ACS are moderately prevalent and are associated with increased risk for recurrent cardiac events and mortality. Although, further tests of the association of ACS-induced PTSD and clinical outcomes are needed, the numbers are significant; overall 12 percent (one in eight) of the patients in the study developed clinically significant PTSD symptoms and four percent of study participants met full diagnostic criteria for the ACS-induced PTSD.

Dr. Donald Edmondson, leader of the study, stated, “Given that some 1.4 million ACS patients are discharged from the U.S. hospitals each year, our results suggest that 168,000 patients will develop clinically significant PTSD symptoms. That is quite substantial. However, there is abundant evidence that psychological disorders in heart patients are under recognized and undertreated. In fact, under diagnosis may be even more pronounced in cardiac practices than in other types of medical practices.”  Edmondson also states that “Fortunately, there are good treatments for people with PTSD, but first, physicians and patients have to be aware that this is a problem. Family members can also help. We know that social support is a good protective factor against PTSD due to any type of traumatic event.”

For more information on the ACS induced PTSD analysis, you can review the paper titled “Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Induced by Acute Coronary Syndrome: A meta analytic review of prevalence and associated clinical outcomes.” or check out the video below with Emory’s, Dr. Laurence Sperling, Director for the Center of Heart Disease prevention at the Emory Clinic.

Don’t Let Your Stress Levels Stress Your Heart

Stress & Heart Disease Chat Sign Up

Join Emory Heart & Vascular Center preventive heart disease specialist Susmita Parashar, MD to learn about how stress can contribute to heart disease. Dr. Parashar will participate in a free live web chat on Tuesday, February 28, 2012 and will be available to provide information linking stress to heart disease as well as answer questions on how to best balance your life to reduce stress. The chat will begin at 12:30pm EST.

Register for the Stress & Heart Disease Web Chat: UPDATE CHAT TRANSCRIPT

 


About Dr. Susmita Parashar

Dr. Susmita Parashar

Dr. Susmita Parashar is a Board certified cardiologist at the Emory Heart and Vascular Center and Assistant Professor of Medicine (Cardiology) at Emory University School of Medicine. Prior to joining as faculty in the Division of Cardiology, Dr Parashar was Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of General Medicine at Emory for 8 years. She applies her experience as a Board certified internist in providing a holistic care to patients. She was awarded the American Heart Association (AHA) Trudy Bush Fellowship for Cardiovascular Research in Women’s Health Award to recognize outstanding work in the area of women’s health and cardiovascular disease and Emory Department of Medicine Early Career Faculty Research Award for Clinical Research.

Dr Parashar completed her residency in Internal Medicine at Medical College of Georgia, Augusta and Cardiology fellowship at Emory University. She completed her Master of Public Health and a Master of Science from Emory in 2005. A passionate clinician-researcher and educator, she trains medical students, residents and cardiology fellows. In addition, she conducts clinical research. Dr Parashar’s clinical and research focus is in preventive cardiology with a focus on women and cardiovascular diseases.

She has received several grants and awards from the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the AHA to conduct research on women and heart disease. She has served as Emory principal investigator for large NIH funded clinical research for heart attack patients. She was also invited to participate as a co-investigator for the NIH funded Cardiovascular Health Study for older adults. She has presented her work in national and international scientific meetings, including the AHA Annual Session, AHA Quality of Care and Outcomes Research in Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke, American College of Cardiology Annual Session, Society of General Internal Medicine and International Congress of Coronary Heart Disease.

Dr. Parashar has authored/coauthored over 60 peer-reviewed publications, including invited textbook chapters, manuscripts, abstracts and review articles. Her work has been published in such prestigious journals as the New England Journal of Medicine, Archives of Internal Medicine and Circulation, and highlighted by the Nature and national media such as CNN, CBS and NPR news.

She believes in family-career balance and applies her experience as a mother of two young children and wife to her work.


Atypical Warning Signs for Heart Attack in Women

Emory Women’s Heart Program cardiologist, Dr. Susmita Parashar outlines some of the differences in the symptoms of heart disease in women versus men in this CNN news piece.

Stress & Heart Disease Chat Sign Up

Emory Healthcare is a proud sponsor of American Heart Association’s My Heart. My Life program.

Join Emory Cardiologist Susmita Parashar, MD in a live chat on Stress and Heart Disease* on Tuesday, February, 28, 2012 at 12:30. To learn more visit emoryhealthcare.org/mdchats.

 

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Patient Story – Can Stress Lead to a Heart Attack?

Stress & Heart Attack RiskEmory patient, Donna Fielding, a healthy looking 41 year old mother of two is sure that stress and her high-intensity type A personality lead to her heart attack at 37. Her heart attack taught Donna to “take a step back, take a deep breath, and make a decision.” She doesn’t let the “little things” in life ruin her days any longer.

Emory physicians are doing research to study the connection between stress and heart attack risk. According Emory physician, Dr. David Sheps, when you get stressed your heart rate and blood pressure go up.

View Donna’s story and learn about the research Emory is doing in a video from Fox 5 Atlanta, below:

Take control of your stress and potentially reduce your risk for heart disease!