Cover art for Can You Die of a Broken Heart?
Murdoch Books, February 2018
Softcover, 224 pages
23.4cm × 15.3cm

Can You Die of a Broken Heart? A Heart Surgeon's Insight into What Makes Us Tick

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'Dr Stamp is so clearly in love with her subject: that wonderful and yet still mysterious organ, the human heart.' Michael Mosley

When actress Debbie Reynolds died a day after her beloved daughter, Carrie Fisher, the world diagnosed it as 'heartbreak'. But what's the evidence? Does emotional upheaval affect the heart? Can love, or chocolate, really heal our heart problems? And why do we know so much about heart attacks in men, when they are more fatal in women?

Heart and lung surgeon Dr Nikki Stamp takes us into the operating theatre, explaining what she sees in patients with heart complications and how a life-saving transplant works. Stamp fell in the love with the heart as a child and continues to be fascinated by its workings and the whole-of-life experiences that affect it. Rich with anecdotes, and insights for maintaining heart health, Can You Die of a Broken Heart? is a blockbuster from a uniquely positioned young specialist.

Recommended by Bill

Bill is the Buyer for Boffins, so blame him when you don’t find the book you want. He reads widely, particularly non-fiction, and reviews books monthly on Wednesdays with Gareth Parker on radio station 6PR.

Dr Nikki Stamp is a heart and lung surgeon, working at Fiona Stanley Hospital,  and in this fascinating book she takes us on a journey into the heart – what makes it tick, and what keeps it ticking nicely. She even answers the question “can you die of a broken heart” – and you’ll find the answer, and the mind-body connections she reveals, fascinating. There’s a famous quote by Japanese author Mineko Iwasaki that sum it up “stab the body and it heals, but injure the heart and the wound lasts a lifetime”.As well as getting an understanding of how the heart works, you’ll learn from this book so much about how diet, exercise, healthy relationships, depression and many other factors affect heart health. It’s written in an engaging way that will have you hooked from page 1. Highly recommended.

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