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Researchers have found that people can die from a "broken heart".
A new study showed that the risk of having a heart attack increased 21 times in the first 24 hours after losing a loved one.
The team at the Cardiovascular Institute at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre (BIDMC) also said that the risk of heart attack remained eight times above normal during the first week after the death of a loved one, slowly declining, but remaining elevated for at least a month.
Heart attacks are a major killer in the UK with the Royal Heart Foundation reporting 88,000 deaths in 2009 alone.
Elizabeth Mostofsky, MPH, ScD, at the centre, said: "Bereavement and grief are associated with increased feelings of depression, anxiety and anger, and those have been shown to be associated with increases in heart rate and blood pressure, and changes in the blood that make it more likely to clot, all of which can lead to a heart attack."
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written by Martin Lambert
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