Cardiac syndrome X from a psychosomatic point of view
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Psychiatr Pol 2008;42(2):229–236
The aim of this paper was to explain the idea of cardiac syndrome X, particularly the association between emotional disturbances, somatoform disorder and syndrome X. Cardiac syndrome X is defined by the presence of angina-like chest pain,a positive response to stress testing and angiographically normal coronary arteriogram. It has been shown to occur in approximately 20 - 30 percent of angina patients undergoing cardiac catheterization. Most of the patients with normal angiograms are women especially in perimenopausal age. Syndrome X patients reported more depression, anxiety and somatic concerns than positive angiographic patients. They have high scores on psychological inventories that measure anxiety and depression, and are very prone to somatization. They have better prognosis with death from cardiac causes than patients with coronary heart disease. With regard to female chest pain patients, somatoform disorder can be assumed. At the present time, there is no common agreement on the exact cause of the symptoms associated with syndrome X.