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Drug used to prevent heart attacks could ‘cure agony of heartbreak’, scientists discover

HEARTACHE is a universal pain experienced by most people within their lifetime.

It can leave you distraught, unable to eat, depressed and in some extreme cases suicidal.

Propranolol reduced symptoms of heartache in 72 per cent of participants

Despite the serious pain it causes and it’s impact on millions of people’s lives each day there is no known cure or treatment for heartbreak.

But now, researchers have discovered that propranolol, a beta-blocker used to prevent heart attacks, could help ‘cure’ tragic heartache.

Beta blockers are prescribed on the NHS to treat high blood pressure, heart failure and in some cases anxiety.

They work by blocking adrenaline – a hormone that triggers the body’s fight-or-flight response – and slowing down the heart.

In the study, published in the Journal of Affective Disorders, looked at whether the drug, alongside therapy, can help those suffering with adjustment disorder (AD) – a extreme reaction to heartbreak.

The scientists from the University of Ottawa, Canada, propranolol was found to reduce symptoms of heartache in 72 per cent of participants from the small study for at least four weeks.

Along with the medication, participants were also given reconsolidation therapy which involves recalling a bad memory with the help of a therapist.

The subjects were instructed to first write down the traumatic memories before taking propranolol.

As part of the study, 48 people, who were experiencing AD received a weekly 25-min treatments for 5 weeks.

They they had to read the narrative aloud, noting down any reactions they had as they went along, such as sweating, trembling, or tension.



Previously, lead researcher Dr Alain Brunet, found that reconsolidation therapy along with propranolol has proven to be effective with PTSD sufferers.

The expert pioneeed of reconsolidation therapy and publishes  patient testimonials on his website vouching for the efficacy of the procedure.

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