Document Detail

Asians differ from non-Hispanic Whites in experimental pain sensitivity.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21561793     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
This study examined differences between Asians and non-Hispanic Whites (Whites) in pain sensitivity, and its relationship to mean arterial pressure (MAP) and heart rate (HR). In 30 Whites (50% female) and 30 Asians (50% female), experimental pain sensitivity was assessed with a hand cold pressor task, yielding measures of pain threshold, tolerance, intensity, and unpleasantness. Mean arterial pressure and HR measurements taken at rest and in response to speech stress were assessed. Perceived stress, anxiety, perfectionism, parental criticism, parental expectations and depressive symptoms were also measured. The results indicated that for the cold pain test, Asians demonstrated significantly lower pain threshold and tolerance levels than Whites. Although no ethnic differences were seen for MAP or HR responses to stress, for Whites higher stress MAP levels were correlated with reduced pain sensitivity, while for Asians higher baseline and stress HR levels were correlated with reduced pain sensitivity. Asians reported higher parental expectations and greater parental criticism than Whites. For Asians only, higher levels of perfectionism were related to more depressive symptoms, anxiety and perceived stress. These results indicate that Asian Americans are more sensitive to experimental pain than Whites and suggest ethnic differences in endogenous pain regulatory mechanisms (e.g. MAP and HR). The results may also have implications for understanding ethnic differences in clinical pain.
Lauren N Rowell; Beth Mechlin; Ellen Ji; Michael Addamo; Susan S Girdler
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2011-05-10
Journal Detail:
Title:  European journal of pain (London, England)     Volume:  15     ISSN:  1532-2149     ISO Abbreviation:  Eur J Pain     Publication Date:  2011 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-07-29     Completed Date:  2011-12-08     Revised Date:  2014-09-13    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9801774     Medline TA:  Eur J Pain     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  764-71     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2010 European Federation of International Association for the Study of Pain Chapters. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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MeSH Terms
Anxiety / ethnology,  physiopathology
Asian Continental Ancestry Group*
Blood Pressure / physiology
Depression / ethnology,  physiopathology
European Continental Ancestry Group*
Heart Rate / physiology
Pain / ethnology*,  physiopathology
Pain Measurement / methods
Pain Threshold / ethnology*,  physiology
Grant Support
R01 DA013705/DA/NIDA NIH HHS; R01 DA013705-05A2/DA/NIDA NIH HHS; R01 DA013705-06/DA/NIDA NIH HHS; R01-DA013705/DA/NIDA NIH HHS

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