Henry Ford Hospital Medical Journal


Recognition and treatment of psychological factors relevant to the acute prehospital and in-hospital phases of myocardial infarction (Ml) are reviewed. Various emotions and personality characteristics can be both risk factors for and consequences of acute Ml. Components of the Type A behavior pattern and levels of somatic and emotional awareness have been linked with excessive treatment-seeking delay for Ml patients. Psychiatric conditions such as panic disorder may mimic symptomatic presentation of Ml and therefore have implications for differential diagnosis in the emergency room. Additionally. anxiety, depression, and neurobehavioral disorders such as delirium are relatively common during the hospitalization period and may contribute to potentially lethal complications of Ml. Because psychological factors are associated with prognosis during each phase of Ml, the identification and treatment of such factors are crucial in providing comprehensive care for MI patients.