Posted by Neill Abayon
Reinforcing an association between psychological stress and cardio vascular disease, research has found that stress on the heart may predict subsequent cardiac events. A five year study at Duke University in the United States followed 126 coronary-disease patients. Those showing signs of reduced blood flow to the heart (myocardial ischemia) during mentally taxing tasks had almost three times the risk of suffering a heart attack, needing a procedure to unblock an artery or dying, compared with patients who didn't show signs of stress-induced ischemia.
The findings suggest that adding mental stress screening to exercise testing in cardiac work-ups may help identify people at risk of a stress-induced heart attack. Once these patients are identified, says lead researcher Dr. Wei Jiang, workshops on coping with stress may be "particularly appropriate."