Linda’s story: Witnessed unexpected death of a friend

Linda was 47 years old when she was diagnosed with Takotsubo syndrome (TTS). Prior to her TTS diagnosis, Linda’s life seemed quite normal, working hard, spending time off with her girls, taking some holidays and having lazy Sundays. Her only health problem was thyroid cancer when she was 22 years of age.

Takotsubo trigger
Linda went to visit a friend in hospital. Linda’s friend died suddenly while she was sitting with them. Within 20 mins of her friend’s death, she developed chest pain.

Medical Management
Linda was taken to the ED and found to have an irregular heartbeat. She was transferred to a larger hospital where she had a coronary angiogram that showed there were no blockages in her coronary arteries. Linda had an echocardiogram and that showed left ventricular wall motion abnormalities which led to the diagnosis of TTS. Linda was in hospital for 6 days and experienced no complications during her hospital stay.

Life after Takotsubo Syndrome
Linda was discharged on 75mg aspirin and a GTN (nitrate) spray. The need for these medications will be reviewed when Linda sees the cardiologist in a month.  Linda had a follow up echo a month ago but has not yet had the results.  She has not had any more chest pain but is still quite tired at times.  Linda keeps fit by participating in water aerobics and going to the gym. Linda has a partner and three daughters, one of whom lives at home. She is also a grandmother and on babysitting duty when needed.