Cynical, impatient people at greater risk of dying of heart attack: study

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on September 16, 2020 Published on September 16, 2020

Hostile behaviour increased clotting time, adrenaline/cholesterol levels and cardiac reactivity, says study published in European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing

Heart attack survivors can get another severe heart attack within two years if they are sarcastic and cynical in nature, say researchers in a study published in the European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing.

American researchers have conducted a study on more than 2,300 volunteers who had recently survived a heart attack. The researchers stated in their study that patients who demonstrated hostile behaviour like cynicism, impatience, irritability, resentment, and sarcasm run the risk of dying of a second heart attack within two years.

Researchers stated that this could be because their negative emotions put a strain on their heart.

The team at the University of Tennessee, US, measured the hostile traits at the beginning of the study using a personality test, and the patients were then followed for 24 months.

The study mentioned that hostile participants have reported increased clotting times, higher adrenaline levels, above normal cholesterol and triglyceride levels, and increased cardiac reactivity.

“These known inflammatory factors may initiate cardiac events and increase poor clinical outcomes.”

The author of the study, Tracey Vitori, said: “Hostility is a personality trait that includes being sarcastic, cynical, resentful, impatient or irritable. It’s not just a one-off occurrence but characterises how a person interacts with people.”

She added: “We know that taking control of lifestyle habits improves the outlook for heart attack patients and our study suggests that improving hostile behaviours could also be a positive move.”

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Published on September 16, 2020
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