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Cardiol Rev. 2007 May-Jun;15(3):150-3.

Transient apical ballooning: sheep in wolves' garb.

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Temple University Hospital-Episcopal Division, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19125, USA.


Takotsubo cardiomyopathy is a unique acute cardiac syndrome characterized by typical ischemic chest symptoms, an elevated ST segment on the electrocardiogram, and elevated cardiac disease markers. It is often misdiagnosed as acute myocardial infarction. Coronary angiography usually shows no evidence of obstructive atherosclerotic coronary artery disease. Left ventriculography and echocardiography reveal a peculiar regional systolic dysfunction with akinesis of the midventricle and apex and compensatory hyperkinesis of the basal ventricular segments. This syndrome has been shown to have a distinct temporal relationship with intense emotional stressors, and is characterized by an excellent clinical recovery when appropriate conservative measures are taken during the acute phase of the illness. In this review, we highlight the proposed pathophysiology and clinical manifestations of this recognized reversible form of myocardial failure.

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