Variations of postĖheart attack depression
Newswise ó Recovering from a heart attack is
tough enough without facing depression. Yet thatís exactly what
happens to nearly half of heart attack survivors. Depression after a
heart attack isnít a one-size-fits-all classification.
variations have different effects on the heart and recovery, reports
the April 2007 issue of the Harvard Heart Letter.
People with postĖheart attack depression are
two to three times more likely to have another heart attack or to
die prematurely compared with survivors who donít have depression.
Depression that occurs for the first time during recovery from a
heart attack appears to be more dangerous than depression that
started before the attack.
Depression arises for various reasons. In some people, depression
and heart disease may reflect a genetic vulnerability that can
trigger both conditions. Depression that first appears after a heart
attack may represent fear of dying or grief over loss of health.
Fear and grief donít necessarily respond to the same treatment
strategies, so figuring out the cause of the problem may help in
finding the right therapy.
The Harvard Heart Letter notes that breaking
out of depression on your own can be tough. Standard treatment
includes talk therapy and medication. If those donít help, ask your
doctor for a referral to a therapist who can help sort out your
thoughts and hit on a more specific treatment.
Some physicians see depression after a heart
attack as an understandable reaction that will go away as you get
better. It is usually much more than that. Regardless of its origin,
getting help is good for your heart, your health, and your life.