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Consuming marijuana increases the risk of acute cardiac stress disorders


Marijuana use can cause stress cardiomyopathy
Drinking marijuana can cause unusual heart muscle dysfunction. This condition, called stress cardiomyopathy, mimics the symptoms of a heart attack. Researchers found that using marijuana could even double the risk of such heart muscle dysfunction.

Scientists at Luke’s University Health Network in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, found in an investigation that marijuana use can double the likelihood of so-called stress cardiomyopathy. The doctors published the results of their study at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2016.

Marijuana use often leads to broken heart syndrome
According to the researchers, marijuana users suffer from so-called broken heart syndrome (broken heart syndrome) almost twice as often compared to non-users. This result did not change when other cardiovascular risk factors were taken into account. The active use of marijuana was determined either by patient information or by examining the patient's urine, the scientists explain.

Marijuana can be harmful to the heart and blood vessels
The effects of marijuana on the cardiovascular system have not been fully researched. With increasing availability and legalization in some American states, the number of consumers is also increasing. But these people should know that marijuana can be harmful to the heart and blood vessels in some people, explains co-author Dr. Amitoj Singh from St. Luke’s University Health Network.

Health effects of stress cardiomyopathy
Stress cardiomyopathy is a sudden, temporary weakening of the heart muscle. For example, the disease causes chest pain, difficulty breathing, dizziness and sometimes even fainting. Between 2003 and 2011, 33,343 people with stress cardiomyopathy were hospitalized in the United States, the authors explain. Of these, 210 sufferers (less than one percent) were also identified as marijuana users. Marijuana users were mostly younger and suffered from fewer cardiovascular risk factors, including less high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol, doctors add.

Marijuana users are more likely to need an implanted defibrillator
Despite the reduced age and fewer cardiovascular risk factors, marijuana users experienced cardiac arrest significantly more frequently during exercise cardiomyopathy (2.4 percent versus 0.8 percent). Those affected also needed an implanted defibrillator more often to correct abnormal heart rhythms (2.4 percent versus 0.6 percent), the researchers report.

Negative effects of marijuana
According to the researchers, marijuana users are also more prone to depression (32.9 percent versus 14.5 percent), psychoses (11.9 percent versus 3.8 percent), anxiety disorders (28.4 percent versus 16.2 percent) ), Alcoholism (13.3 percent versus 2.8 percent), tobacco use (73.3 percent versus 28.6 percent) and multiple substance abuse (11.4 percent versus 0.3 percent). Some of these factors in turn increase the risk of developing stress cardiomyopathy.

Marijuana users with chest pain should see a doctor
If you consume marijuana and experience symptoms such as chest pain and shortness of breath, you should see a doctor. This can ensure that you do not suffer from stress cardiomyopathy or other heart problems, explains Dr. Singh.

Limitations of the study
However, the investigation also had some limitations. Because it was a retrospective study, the researchers were unable to determine how often marijuana was used. The period between the use of marijuana and the occurrence of stress cardiomyopathy was also sometimes unclear. Observational studies are not intended to prove a causal connection, explain the doctors. (as)

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