Bad Romance Can Break Hearts

People who clashed with partners faced 23% higher risk of heart trouble
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 9, 2007 5:17 PM CDT
"It seems clear from this analysis that no matter if positive aspects of social relationships are having a significant protective effect, the negative impact seems far stronger," said one researcher....   (
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – Love-life troubles can literally break hearts, new research has found. People who reported frequent arguments, criticism, or other types of conflict with partners or close friends experienced a 23% greater risk of having a heart attack or chest pain. "A person's heart condition seems to be influenced by negative intimate relationships," said researchers writing in Archives of Internal Medicine.

The results held even after controlling for risk factors such as obesity, smoking and drinking. While social relationships have been shown to have a positive, "protective" effect on health, "the negative impact seems far stronger," the lead researcher said. "People continually replay negative experiences."