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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Takotsubo Syndrome in African American vs. Non-African American Women

  • Author(s): QaQa, Ashraf
  • Daoko, Joseph
  • Jallad, Nesreen
  • Aburomeh, Omar
  • Goldfarb, Irvin
  • Shamoon, Fayez
  • et al.
Creative Commons 'BY-NC' version 4.0 license

Objectives: Takotsubo syndrome (TTS) is a reversible cause of heart failure rarely described in African-American patients. This study aimed to compare and contrast the clinical characteristics of TTS in African-American (AA) and non-African-American (NAA) patients.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the charts of eight patients (four AA and four NAA) diagnosed with TTS, between June 2006 and August 2008, in four different teaching hospitals: St Michael’s Medical Center, St Joseph’s Medical Center, Trinitas hospital and St Louis’ University Hospital. We compared the patients with regard to presenting symptoms, precipitating stressors, electrocardiographic findings, troponin levels, ejection fraction and in-hospital course.

Results: All patients were females (mean age 64 for AA and 67 for NAA). All patients experienced chest pain and had elevated troponin levels. Two AA and three NAA patients had associated shortness of breath and one NAA had syncope. All AA and three NAA had T-wave inversions. Three NAA and one AA had ST segment elevation. Three patients in both groups developed prolongation of the QT interval. Coronary angiograms did not reveal any significant obstructive coronary artery disease. Three patients, all NAA, needed hemodynamic support during their hospital stay but none died.

Conclusion: AA and NAA women with TTS have similar presenting symptoms but may differ in the electrocardiographic findings and in-hospital course of the disease. [West J Emerg Med. 2011;12(2):218-223.]

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