A woman from Texas was literally broken-hearted after her beloved dog, Meha, of 9 years died as a result of congestive heart failure. Joanie Simpson was taken to the emergency room and was diagnosed with 'Takotsubo cardiomyopathy', also known as 'Broken-heart syndrome'.
Broken-Hearted By Meha's Death
Joanie Simpson, now a 62-year-old resident of Camp Woods in Texas, was rushed to the hospital in Houston by a helicopter one morning, after she woke up with a back pain and a feeling of discomfort in her chest.
At first, doctors at the hospital thought Simpson was experiencing a heart attack, as her body had manifested the typical symptoms.
However, tests later showed that she was actually experiencing symptoms similar to that of heart attacks. She was diagnosed with Takotsubo cardiomyopathy, also known as "stress cardiomyopathy" and "broken-heart syndrome". Doctors had informed Simpson that the death of her Yorkshire terrier, Meha, had almost took her own life away.
Symptoms Of Broken-Heart Syndrome
According to doctors, broken heart syndrome is a temporary heart condition that is often brought about by stressful situations and traumatic events. Over 85 percent of cases were either caused by a physical or emotional and stressful event that usually precedes the start of the symptoms.
Stressful events can include grief from the death of a loved one, financial problems in one's life, arguments and disagreements, and even fear of speaking in front of a large audience. The symptoms of broken-heart syndrome can mimic the symptoms of a heart attack. They include chest pain or discomfort and shortness of breath.
Simpson's case was featured in the New England Journal of Medicine.
"The clinical presentation may be identical to that seen in patients with acute coronary syndrome, but the condition is characterized by transient left ventricular systolic and diastolic dysfunction of the apex and midventricle in the absence of attributable coronary artery disease, " the report said.
Simpson's Close Relationship With Meha
Simpson told the Washington Post that Meha was "like a daughter" to her. She would jump into the pool and would also have her own share of hamburger when Simpson and her husband would grill on Friday nights.
According to Simpson, before Meha's death, she already had plans to have Meha euthanized because she was too sick. However, she said Meha looked like she was doing better at that time, so she decided to cancel the plan. Unfortunately, Meha died the following day, in May 2016.