helene ruiz

Joined October 2007

Helene Ruiz was born January 15, 1958 in New York City. She has exhibited and curated numerous shows and is the founder of The Urban...

The Diagnosis?

“I believe that your chest pains and shortness of breath may be related to takotsubo cardiomyopathy,.”
“What the hell is that?” “Spell that for me, so I can look it up when I get home.”
“It’s also known as broken heart syndrome. Broken heart syndrome, also called stress-induced cardiomyopathy or takotsubo cardiomyopathy, can strike even if you’re healthy. Have you experienced a death, break up, divorce, shock? Are you under a lot of stress?”
“You gotta be kidding me! right?” I laugh.
“No. You have to avoid stress, especially being sickle thalassemic, you are already facing challenges and heart disease still remains the primary cause of mortality in thalassemics. As a matter of fact, I just read that over 70% of early deaths were accounted for in “thal” patients by stress induced cardiomyopathy."
“Well Doc….guess I’m gonna drop dead then, cause, I live in a pool of stress. And there is no way out so I have to keep swimming. Broken hearts, stress, etc are a part of my life and have been.”
" We can give you some medication to help relieve the stress on your heart, but you really need to avoid stress as much as possible."
" Yea…Yea…Yea..Hey you might think I’m nuts doc…but if they take me out, I will be back cuz I’m not finished with my mission yet." “So go ahead and jot that down in your notes…She’s coming back!”
See ya at my next appointment….I’m going to see my grand kids…
( at home google research: Women are more likely than men to experience the sudden, intense chest pain which is the reaction to a surge of stress hormones that can be caused by an emotionally stressful event. It could be the death of a loved one or even a divorce, breakup or physical separation, betrayal or romantic rejection. Broken heart syndrome can lead to severe, short-term heart muscle failure. In broken heart syndrome, a part of your heart temporarily enlarges and doesn’t pump well, while the rest of your heart functions normally or with even more forceful contractions. Researchers are just starting to learn the causes, and how to diagnose and treat it.Cardiogenic shock ( arrythmias ) also may occur with broken heart syndrome. Cardiogenic shock is a condition in which a suddenly weakened heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs, and it can be fatal if it isn’t treated right away. When people die from heart attacks, cardiogenic shock is the most common cause of death.)"


In Stitches
by helene ruiz

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