According to a study, a stressful marriage can damage your heart health

According to a new study, there may be a link between distress in marriage and a worse outcome after a heart attack for people under the age of 55.

“Our findings support the fact that stress experienced in everyday life, such as marital stress, can impact the recovery of young adults after a heart attack,” said study lead author Cenjing Zhu. a press release published on Monday 31 October. announcing the results.

The preliminary research will be presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2022, which will be held in person in Chicago and virtually November 5-7, 2022.

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Zhu is a PhD. Candidate for the Yale School of Public Health in New Haven, Connecticut.

He added in the release that “additional stressors beyond marital stress, such as financial strain or work stress, may also play a role in the recovery of young adults and the interplay between these factors requires further research.”

The study looked at 1,593 young adults between the ages of 18 and 55 who were being treated for a heart attack at one of 103 hospitals located in 30 states.
(iStock)

The study looked at 1,593 young adults between the ages of 18 and 55 who were being treated for a heart attack at one of 103 hospitals located in 30 states.

These adults were simultaneously enrolled in a study called “VIRGO” or “Variation in Recovery: Role of Gender on Outcomes of Young AMI Patients,” as noted in the release.

All of the people in the study were married or in a “committed partnership” when they had a heart attack, according to the release, and more than 66 percent of those in the study were women.

Marital stress was also linked to chest pains and hospital readmission within a year of the initial heart attack, according to the study.

One month after the heart attack, participants were asked to complete a questionnaire titled “Stockholm Marital Stress Scale” and were rated as having “no / mild”, “moderate” and “severe” marital stress levels.

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The participants were then studied for a year after their heart attack, the statement said.

Zhu and his co-authors found that people who had “severe stress levels” scored 1.6 points lower in physical health and 2.6 points lower in mental health on a 12-item scale than those with levels of no / mild stress.

Participants were assessed as having

Participants were rated as having “no / mild”, “moderate” and “severe” marital stress levels.
(iStock)

“Participants reporting severe stress levels [scored] nearly 5 points less in overall quality of life and 8 points less in quality of life when measured by a scale specifically designed for cardiac patients, “the statement read.

Marital stress was also linked to chest pains and hospital readmission within a year of the initial heart attack, the study determined.

Those with “severe” stress levels were nearly 50 percent more likely to be readmitted to hospital for any cause than those without marital stress.

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According to the release, worse health outcomes existed even when controlled for the participant’s gender, age, race, and ethnicity.

The check for employment, education, income and health insurance status reduced the association, the statement said, but “the link remained statistically significant.”

“My wife’s daily emotional and mental support has undoubtedly helped stabilize my atrial fibrillation,” said a man from the Boston area.
(iStock)

A Boston-area man in his 70s who has recurrent atrial fibrillation of the heart said that Yale’s research makes sense to him: He found that being happy and calm in his marriage positively affected his heart health.

“I know I’m older than the patients in this study, but my wife’s daily emotional and mental support has undoubtedly helped stabilize my atrial fibrillation,” he told Fox News Digital.

He added: “Love heals”.

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Zhu said that in the future, medical professionals “should consider screening patients for daily stress during follow-up appointments to help better identify those at high risk for low physical / mental recovery or further recovery”.

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“A holistic care model based on both clinical factors and psychosocial aspects can be useful, especially for young adults after a heart attack,” he said.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States – one person dies every 34 seconds from heart disease, according to the CDC.

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