The Effect of Anxiety Sensitivity on the Autonomic Nervous Reaction During the Cold Pressor Test

[Speaker] Dodo, Naomi:1
[Co-author] Hashimoto, Ryusaku:1
1:Health Sciences University of Hokkaido (Japan)

We examined the effect of anxiety sensitivity (AS) on autonomic nervous response due to acute pain induced during the cold pressor test (CPT). The college students participated in the study and were divided into low- and high-AS groups based on Anxiety Sensitivity Index scores. The study included three phases: Rest, CPT, and Recovery. We measured fear of pain as index of psychological factor. Autonomic nervous response data were also collected during each phase. Scores for fear of pain were higher in the high-AS group relative to the low-AS group. Parasympathetic nervous response was activated in the CPT and Recovery phases in the low-AS group but remained unchanged throughout all phases in the high-AS group. These findings suggested that the parasympathetic nervous system was inactive in the high-AS group in both the CPT and Recovery phases. In conclusion, we observed a relationship between AS and autonomic nervous response.
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