Harvard Heart Letter

Emotional stress induced ischemia

Photo: Thinkstock
Emotional stress has physical effects on the heart.

Reduce emotional stress to avoid heart attack.

Emotional stress imperils 70% of people with heart disease.

Clinical studies find that seven in 10 people with heart disease have episodes of inadequate blood flow to the heart when they experience emotional stress. There's a medical term for it: mental stress–induced myocardial ischemia, or mental stress ischemia for short.

To continue reading this article, you must login.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »