Anger expression and incident stroke: prospective evidence from the Kuopio ischemic heart disease study.
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: High levels of anger are associated with an increased risk of coronary heart disease and hypertension, but little is known about the role of anger in stroke risk. METHODS: Anger expression style and risk of incident stroke were examined in 2074 men (mean age, 53.0+/-5.2 years) from a population-based, longitudinal study of risk factors for ischemic heart disease and related outcomes in eastern Finland. Self-reported style of anger expression was assessed by questionnaire at baseline. Linkage to the FINMONICA stroke and national hospital discharge registers identified 64 first strokes (50 ischemic) through 1996. Average follow-up time was 8.3+/-0.9 (mean+/-SD) years. RESULTS: Men who reported the highest level of expressed anger were at twice the risk of stroke (relative hazard, 2.03; 95% CI, 1.05 to 3.94) of men who reported the lowest level of anger, after adjustments for age, resting blood pressure, smoking, alcohol consumption, body mass index, low-density and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, fibrinogen, socioeconomic status, history of diabetes, and use of antihypertensive medications. Additional analysis showed that these associations were evident only in men with a history of ischemic heart disease (n=481), among whom high levels of outwardly expressed anger (high anger-out) predicted >6-fold increased risk of stroke after risk factor adjustment (relative hazard, 6.87; 95% CI, 1.50 to 31.4). Suppressed anger (anger-in) and controlled anger (anger-control) were not consistently related to stroke risk. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first population-based study to show a significant relationship between high levels of expressed anger and incident stroke. Additional research is necessary to explore the mechanisms that underlie this association. (+info)
Preliminary assessment of patients' opinions of queuing for coronary bypass graft surgery at one Canadian centre.
OBJECTIVES: To explore psychological and socioeconomic concerns of patients who queued for coronary artery bypass surgery and the effectiveness of support existing in one Canadian cardiovascular surgical center. DESIGN: Standardised questionnaire and structured interview. SETTING: Victoria General Hospital, Halifax, Nova Scotia. SUBJECTS: 100 consecutive patients awaiting non-emergency bypass surgery. RESULTS: Most patients (96%) found the explanation of findings at cardiac catheterisation and the justification given for surgery satisfactory. However, 84 patients complained that waiting for surgery was stressful and 64 registered at least moderate anxiety. Anger over delays was expressed by 16%, but only 4% thought that queuing according to medical need was unfair. Economic hardship, attributed to delayed surgery, was declared by 15 patients. This primarily affected those still working--namely, blue collar workers and younger age groups. Only 41% of patients were satisfied with existing institutional supports. Problems related mainly to poor communication. CONCLUSIONS: Considerable anxiety seems to be experienced by most patients awaiting bypass surgery. Better communication and education might alleviate some of this anxiety. Economic hardship affects certain patient subgroups more than others and may need to be weighed in the selection process. A more definitive examination of these issues is warranted. (+info)
Dissociable neural responses to facial expressions of sadness and anger.
Previous neuroimaging and neuropsychological studies have investigated the neural substrates which mediate responses to fearful, disgusted and happy expressions. No previous studies have investigated the neural substrates which mediate responses to sad and angry expressions. Using functional neuroimaging, we tested two hypotheses. First, we tested whether the amygdala has a neural response to sad and/or angry facial expressions. Secondly, we tested whether the orbitofrontal cortex has a specific neural response to angry facial expressions. Volunteer subjects were scanned, using PET, while they performed a sex discrimination task involving static grey-scale images of faces expressing varying degrees of sadness and anger. We found that increasing intensity of sad facial expression was associated with enhanced activity in the left amygdala and right temporal pole. In addition, we found that increasing intensity of angry facial expression was associated with enhanced activity in the orbitofrontal and anterior cingulate cortex. We found no support for the suggestion that angry expressions generate a signal in the amygdala. The results provide evidence for dissociable, but interlocking, systems for the processing of distinct categories of negative facial expression. (+info)
Psychological states and lymphocyte beta-adrenergic receptor responsiveness.
There is a complex interplay between psychological states and biochemical factors. beta-Adrenergic receptor responsiveness is altered in some patients with depression and anxiety disorders, but the relation between various psychological states and receptor function in a normal population is unknown. We measured lymphocyte beta-adrenergic receptor density (Bmax), sensitivity (cAMP ratio), the Profile of Mood States (POMS), and Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) in 39 hypertensives and 81 normotensives. We examined correlations between log normalized receptor variables and psychological states. Log Bmax showed negative correlations with age and with POMS tension-anxiety, depression-dejection, and anger-hostility. Log cAMP ratio did not show significant correlations with POMS and STAI ratings. In step-wise multiple regression analyses, 36% of the variance in Bmax was accounted for by POMS tension-anxiety, and age. Our study suggests that increased POMS tension-anxiety was highly associated with down-regulation of beta-adrenergic receptors, even in subjects who do not have psychiatric illness. Numerous psychological states could be associated with changes of beta-adrenergic receptor responsiveness in a normal population. (+info)
Psychosocial predictors of survival in metastatic melanoma.
PURPOSE: Research interest in psychosocial predictors of the onset and course of cancer has been active since the 1950s. However, results have been contradictory and the literature is noted for methodologic weaknesses. In this prospective study, we aimed to systematically obtain data on psychosocial factors associated with human response to illness. PATIENTS AND METHODS: One hundred twenty-five patients with metastatic melanoma completed questionnaires measuring cognitive appraisal of threat, coping, psychologic adjustment, perceived aim of treatment, social support, and quality of life (QOL). Questionnaires were completed, where possible, every 3 months for 2 years after diagnosis. Survival was measured from date of study entry to date of death or was censored at the date of last follow-up for surviving patients. RESULTS: In a multivariate Cox regression analysis of baseline data, which controlled for demographic and disease predictors, the psychologic variables of perceived aim of treatment (P <.001), minimization (P <. 05), and anger (P <.05) were independently predictive of survival. Patients who were married (P <.01) and who reported a better QOL (P <.05) also survived longer. CONCLUSION: The prognostic significance of psychologic and QOL scores remained after allowance for conventional prognostic factors. If these associations reflect an early perception by the patient or doctor of disease progression, then measures are at least valuable early indicators of such progression. If psychologic processes have a more direct influence on the course of the underlying illness, then it may be possible to manipulate them for therapeutic effect. We are now conducting a randomized controlled trial of a psychologic intervention to further elucidate these issues. (+info)
Tryptophan enhancement/depletion and reactions to failure on a cooperative computer game.
Twenty-eight high trait hostility male volunteers played a "cooperative" computer game 4.5 hours after an amino acid drink enhanced with, or depleted of, tryptophan. Each trial involved steering a tank through minefields following directions from an unknown "partner." Failure was experienced when the tank hit a mine or when time ran out. Subjects' moods, verbal aggression, attributions of blame, vocal acoustics, and blood pressure were assessed. Differences between tryptophan groups were not significant for primary measures of anger and verbal aggression. However, depleted subjects reported greater increases in feelings of restlessness and incompetence, were less successful in avoiding mines and showed greater increases in blood pressure during the game. Subjects in both groups sent more negative ratings when they lost the game by virtue of hitting a mine rather than losing by running out of time. However, ratings of the depleted group were less influenced by the reason for losing the game. Also, vocal acoustics showed a group X reason-for-losing interaction in the high-frequency band. Tryptophan-depleted subjects with high scores on Behavioral-Activation-System-Drive were most likely to send negative ratings and those scoring high on Buss-Durkee Hostility Inventory Assault and Guilt to report increased anger after the game. (+info)
Validity and reliability of the Japanese version of the selected anger expression scale and age, sex, occupation and regional differences in anger expression among Japanese.
To examine the reliability and construct validity of the Japanese version of the Anger Expression Scale among four Japanese communities, and to examine distributions of anger expression scores according to sex, age, occupation, and community, we performed a cross-sectional study among 1,802 men and 3,229 women aged 20-70 in four geographic populations in 1995-97. We handed a self-administered questionnaire, which was selected from the Spielberger Anger Expression Scale, to the participants in the risk factor surveys and measured anger-in and anger-out as the anger expression scale. These scales had high internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha coefficient was 0.97-0.98 for anger-out and 0.77-0.86 for anger-in) and were of almost the same structure as the original. The Pearson correlation coefficients for the anger expression scale examined in 1995 and 1996 were 0.69 for anger-out and 0.57 for anger-in (both p < 0.001). The mean scores of both anger-out and anger-in were inversely associated with age. The mean anger-out score was higher for men than for women (p < 0.001), whereas the mean anger-in score did not vary significantly between the sexes. Furthermore, the mean scores of anger-out and anger-in varied among populations and occupational groups. The present study suggests that the Japanese version of the selected Anger Expression Scale is an acceptable scale for evaluating anger expression among Japanese. (+info)
Anger proneness predicts coronary heart disease risk: prospective analysis from the atherosclerosis risk in communities (ARIC) study.
BACKGROUND: Increased research attention is being paid to the negative impact of anger on coronary heart disease (CHD). METHODS AND RESULTS: This study examined prospectively the association between trait anger and the risk of combined CHD (acute myocardial infarction [MI]/fatal CHD, silent MI, or cardiac revascularization procedures) and of "hard" events (acute MI/fatal CHD). Participants were 12 986 black and white men and women enrolled in the Atherosclerosis Risk In Communities study. In the entire cohort, individuals with high trait anger, compared with their low anger counterparts, were at increased risk of CHD in both event categories. The multivariate-adjusted hazard ratio (HR) (95% CI) was 1.54 (95% CI 1.10 to 2.16) for combined CHD and 1.75 (95% CI 1.17 to 2.64) for "hard" events. Heterogeneity of effect was observed by hypertensive status. Among normotensive individuals, the risk of combined CHD and of "hard" events increased monotonically with increasing levels of trait anger. The multivariate-adjusted HR of CHD for high versus low anger was 2.20 (95% CI 1.36 to 3.55) and for moderate versus low anger was 1.32 (95% CI 0.94 to 1.84). For "hard" events, the multivariate-adjusted HRs were 2.69 (95% CI 1.48 to 4.90) and 1.35 (95% CI 0.87 to 2.10), respectively. No statistically significant association between trait anger and incident CHD risk was observed among hypertensive individuals. CONCLUSIONS: Proneness to anger places normotensive middle-aged men and women at significant risk for CHD morbidity and death independent of the established biological risk factors. (+info)