- 14 Mar 2002
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I wasn't sure whether to put this under "Hot News" or "Japanese Food". Anyhow, it seems that too much wasabi can break your heart:
As strange medical cases go, this one is quite the collector's item: A 60-year-old woman ate so much wasabi, believing it to be the similarly coloured avocado, that she developed a type of heart dysfunction typically brought on by intense emotional o
A 60-year-old Israeli woman went to an emergency room complaining of chest pain. Doctors found she was suffering from a wasabi-induced “broken heart syndrome” — a condition sometimes seen in people who have recently lost a loved one. Doctors at Soroka University Medical Center in Beersheba say the woman had mistakenly consumed about a teaspoon of wasabi at a wedding, thinking it was avocado. That accidental consumption was followed by unexpected chest pressure that spread to her arms for several hours, though it still wasn’t enough to make her leave the wedding. The pain later subsided, according to a case study published in BMJ Case Reports. Feeling weakness and general discomfort the next day, though, the woman finally decided to seek medical care, according to the study. A point-of-care ultrasound, a type of ultrasound used at a patient’s bedside for diagnostic purposes, showed some dysfunction in her heart’s left ventricle, according to the study, which is consistent with takotsubo cardiomyopathy, also known as “broken heart syndrome."