The Use of Fluoxetine in a Patient With Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy

Journal of Psychiatric Practice
Suki K ConradGlenn Catalano


Takotsubo cardiomyopathy is an acute coronary syndrome that is believed to be brought on by stress. Symptoms, which are similar to an acute myocardial infarction, include chest pain, shortness of breath, arrhythmias, and cardiogenic shock, and the electrocardiogram often shows ST and T wave changes. Left ventricular wall hypokinesis along with a significantly reduced ejection fraction are seen on echocardiogram. The great majority of these symptoms all occur in the absence of occlusive disease. Many cases have been reported in which the development of takotsubo cardiomyopathy was associated with serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors and tricyclic antidepressants. However, no cases of takotsubo cardiomyopathy have been reported involving selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. This article presents the case of a 51-year-old woman receiving stable therapy with fluoxetine who developed takotsubo cardiomyopathy after an acute stress. We also discuss the clinical presentation of takotsubo cardiomyopathy, review possible causes, and discuss the treatment of depressive symptoms in patients who are at increased risk of developing this illness.


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