A new study in the journal Clinical Cardiology finds that a Super Bowl loss for a home team was associated with increased death rates from heart issues in both men and women and in older individuals.
Sports fans may be emotionally involved in watching their favorite teams. When the team loses, it can cause some degree of emotional stress.
Led by Robert A. Kloner, MD, PhD, of the Heart Institute, Good Samaritan Hospital and Keck School of Medicine at USC in Los Angeles, researchers assessed how often this emotional stress may translate to increases in cardiac death.
Results show that the Los Angeles Super Bowl loss of 1980 increased total and cardiac deaths in both men and women and triggered more death in older than younger patients. In contrast, there was a trend for a Super Bowl win to reduce death more frequently in older people and in women.
“Physicians and patients should be aware that stressful games might elicit an emotional response that could trigger a cardiac event,” Kloner notes. “Stress reduction programs or certain medications might be appropriate in individual cases.”