November 13, 2016
American Heart Association
Active marijuana use may double the risk of stress cardiomyopathy, an uncommon heart muscle malfunction that can mimic heart attack symptoms, according to new research.
Active marijuana use may double the risk of stress cardiomyopathy, an uncommon heart muscle malfunction that can mimic heart attack symptoms, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2016.
The researchers found that marijuana users were almost twice as likely to develop stress cardiomyopathy compared to non-users, even after taking other cardiovascular risk factors into consideration. Active marijuana use was identified either by information provided by the patient in their medical history, or by a marker in the patient's urine.
“The effects of marijuana, especially on the cardiovascular system, are not well known yet. With its increasing availability and legalization in some states, people need to know that marijuana may be harmful to the heart and blood vessels in some people,” said Amitoj Singh, M.D. study co-author and chief cardiology fellow at St. Luke's University Health Network in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
Stress cardiomyopathy is a sudden, usually temporary, weakening of the heart muscle that reduces the heart's ability to pump, leading to chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness and sometimes fainting.
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