Love Index: Vermont and Hawaii Lead in Love-Related Medical Symptoms

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Practice Fusion’s Research Division applies its epidemiological methods to ask “Where’s the Love?” on Valentine’s Day

Heart palpitations, sleepless nights, increased anxiety, elevated stress levels and butterflies in your stomach could be signs of ‘panic disorder without agoraphobia’ (ICD-9 300.01) or could it be love? For Valentine’s Day, Practice Fusion's Research Division used its talents of identifying disease outbreaks and adverse drug reactions to study affairs of the heart.

Key symptoms associated with falling in love were identified using a 2005 article in the British journal, The Psychologist (see the full list below). This was hardly the first look at the concept of lovesickness. The metaphor “love as a sickness” dates back to Ancient Greece, where the poet Sappho wrote, “And to your lovely laughter – all of it / Makes my heart in my breast flutter…I’m drenched in cold sweat. Trembling / Takes hold of me totally. Paler than grass / Am I. I appear to be little short of / Having died.”

Staff data scientists at Practice Fusion used a de-identified clinical dataset of over 2.8 million records to determine where the “symptoms” of love were most prevalent in the United States. Vermont came in first in the 2012 Love Index, followed by Hawaii and Idaho, based on prevalence of diseases related to lovesickness like neurotic disorder and dysrhythmia.

Top 5 Lovesick States According to Practice Fusion’s Love Index:

1. Vermont
2. Hawaii
3. Idaho
4. New Hampshire
5. New Mexico

Bottom 5 Lovesick States According to Practice Fusion’s Love index:

46. Pennsylvania
47. Montana
48. District of Columbia
49. Maryland
50. North Dakota

“Symptoms associated with ‘falling in love’ rarely measure up to their idealization in everyday life,” said Robert Rowley, MD, Practice Fusion's Medical Director. “Patients experiencing ‘symptoms of love’ should see their physician to ensure that they are simply romantic and don’t require urgent medical attention.”

About the Love Index
Practice Fusion evaluated a clinical dataset of 2.8 million de-identified electronic medical records from January 2011 to January 2012. The symptoms of love were identified as: Insomnia/lack of sleep, increased anxiety, obsession, hysteria, mania, high blood pressure, elevated stress levels, butterflies in your stomach, euphoria, sweating and heart palpitations. Although for the purpose of this announcement these issues are categorized as “symptoms of love”, they could be evidence of a more serious illness or disease. Individuals experiencing these symptoms should see their doctor.

About Practice Fusion's Research Division
Practice Fusion's Research Division provides information from one of the largest longitudinal clinical databases in the US for the purposes of clinical research and public health analysis. With a focus on real-time insight into adverse drug reactions, disease outbreaks and other national health issues, Practice Fusion's Research Division powers studies that are providing new insight into healthcare and how it is delivered. All research information utilized is de-identified and compliant with HIPAA cfr 164.514. For more information, please visit


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Stephanie Schlegel