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Recurrent Takotsubo Syndrome: How Frequent, and How Does It Present?

BACKGROUND: Recurrent Takotsubo syndrome (TS) is not uncommon but experience with TS recurrence is inherently limited by the infrequency of the condition itself and incomplete long-term follow-up. There is limited published data on the clinical features and outcomes of patients with recurrent TS. We aimed to describe the clinical characteristics and outcomes of patients with recurrent TS in a large Auckland cohort.

METHOD: The clinical profile, in-hospital, and long-term outcomes were prospectively assessed in consecutive patients with recurrent TS presenting to Auckland's three major hospitals between January 2006 and January 2023.

RESULTS: During the study period, 472 TS patients were identified. Of the 467 patients discharged alive after the index event, 45 (9.6%) patients (mean age 62.3±11.0 years), all women, experienced recurrent TS. Median time interval from index event to the first recurrence was 3.14 years (range 27 days to 13.8 years). In 27 (60%) of the 45 patients, the subsequent events involved a stressor (physical triggers, n=8; emotional triggers, n=19). The stressor type differed between the index and recurrent event in 18 (40%) of the 45 patients. Thirteen (28.9%) had a different echocardiographic variant of TS at first recurrence. All patients with recurrent TS were discharged alive. Four patients died late after discharge from the first recurrence, all but one from a non-cardiac cause.

CONCLUSIONS: One in 10 patients with TS experience recurrent events. These may occur many years later, and both the stressor type and the echocardiographic variant may be different at the recurrent event.

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