Beloved actor Kristoff St. John, best known for his longtime role on “The Young and the Restless,” was found dead in his home on February 3, 2019, but the cause of death had not been revealed until now.
The results of an autopsy indicated the cause of death was “hypertrophic heart disease,” the coroner’s office reported. With alcohol being a contributing factor, the Los Angeles County coroner’s office reported.
“Other significant conditions: myocardial bridging of left anterior descending coronary artery and effects of ethanol. The manner of death has been certified as an accident.”
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a disease in which the heart muscle (myocardium) becomes abnormally thick (hypertrophied). The thickened heart muscle can make it harder for the heart to pump blood.
Many believe that this heart condition was induced by the intense pain St. John carried with him after his only son Julian died by suicide in 2014. Kristoff’s last activity on Twitter was to retweet a message that said, “Grieving the loss of a child is a process. It begins on the day your child passes, and ends the day the parent joins them.”
Broken heart syndrome, also called stress-induced cardiomyopathy or takotsubo cardiomyopathy, can strike even if you’re healthy. “Tako tsubo” are octopus traps that resemble the pot-like shape of the stricken heart.
With this syndrome, a patient experiences a sudden, intense chest pain — the reaction to a surge of stress hormones — that can be caused by an emotionally stressful event. It could be the death of a loved one or even a divorce, breakup or physical separation, betrayal or romantic rejection.
In broken heart syndrome, a part of your heart temporarily enlarges and doesn’t pump well, while the rest of your heart functions normally or with even more forceful contractions. It can also lead to severe, short-term heart muscle failure.
St. John played businessman Neil Winters on the Young & the Restless from 1991 until his death, which made him the longest running black character in the show’s history. His role earned him two Daytime Emmy Awards, the first in 1992 and the second in…