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BHF - A third of heart attack survivors suffer with depression

One in three heart attack survivors has suffered with anxiety or depression, according to BHF’s latest survey.

Research that BHF funded has shown that heart patients who experience symptoms of depression are more likely to suffer recurring cardiac problems.

It’s thought that there is around a twofold risk in these patients having another heart attack or dying of heart disease. 

It's unacceptable people aren't getting help

Dr Mike Knapton, BHF’s Associate Medical Director said: “We know that recovery from a heart attack is rarely just physical. 

“It is unacceptable that people may not be getting the support they deserve to help with anxiety and depression. Through our Heart Helpline, our dedicated team of heart nurses can provide specialist support and information for heart patients to ensure they feel they know as much as possible about any matter related to their illness. 

“We would encourage people to get in touch so they don’t suffer alone from the sudden, devastating and life-changing consequences that heart disease often brings.”

The benefits of cardiac rehab

Cem Hilmi, 41, struggled to come to terms with his situation after suffering a heart attack in 2011. 

Cem said: “Before my heart attack I could probably count how many times I had cried since childhood on one hand. But after this I was a lot more emotional. It shocked me just how constant it was. 

 “I might have slipped through the net but through the BHF website I found a local cardiac rehabilitation programme. If it weren’t for this ongoing support, it would have been a different story for me. Cardiac rehab pulled me back and inspired me to help other heart patients who are in the same situation I was.” 

Download BHF’s free booklet on heart disease and your emotional wellbeing.

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