The Role of Emotional Competence in Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy

Angelo Compare, Agostino Brugnera, Marcantonio M. Spada, Cristina Zarbo, Giorgio A. Tasca, Sandra Sassaroli, Gabriele Caselli, Giovanni Maria Ruggiero, Ilan Wittstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective The current study examined the role of emotional competences and depression in takotsubo cardiomyopathy (TTC). Methods We compared 37 TTC patients who experienced emotion triggers (TTC-t: M (SD) age = 66.4 (12.8) years, 33 women) with 37 TTC patients who did not experience emotion triggers (TTC-nt: M (SD) age = 65.8 (11.1) years, 33 women) and 37 patients with acute myocardial infarction who experienced an emotion trigger (AMI-t: M (SD) age = 66.1 (10.1) years, 33 women). Three aspects of emotional competence (emotional intelligence, metacognitive beliefs, and emotional processing deficits) were assessed using the Trait Meta-Mood Scale (TMMS), the Meta-Cognitions Questionnaire 30, and the Emotional Processing Scale. Differences between-group means were evaluated using multivariate analysis of covariance, adjusting for depressive symptom (Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression). Results Compared with the TTC-nt and AMI-t comparison groups, TTC-t patients had low scores on emotional intelligence (TMMS Attention: F(2, 184) = 23.10, p <.001; TMMS Repair: F(2, 184) = 11.98, p <.001) and high scores in metacognitive beliefs and emotional processing deficits (e.g., Meta-Cognitions Questionnaire 30 Negative Beliefs about Thoughts: F(2, 184) = 56.93, p <.001), independent of the levels of depressive symptom. TTC-nt patients also had significantly lower scores on the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression scale compared with AMI-t (p =.021) and TTC-t (p =.004) patients. Conclusions TTC-t patients showed a specific dysfunctional profile of emotional competence, even after adjusting for depressive symptom. These results provided a better understanding of the psychological factors that contribute to TTC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)377-384
Number of pages8
JournalPsychosomatic medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 1 2018


  • depression
  • emotional competence
  • emotional intelligence
  • emotional processing
  • metacognitive beliefs
  • takotsubo cardiomyopathy.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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