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Gender difference in Pain Experience - Women feel More Pain than men

. He further said: “omen who concentrate on the emotional aspects of their pain may actually experience more pain as a result, possibly because the emotions associated with pain are negative.”

Researchers believe that it is the fear of anxiety-related sensations and an increased tendency to negatively interpret such sensations, both of which are more predominant in women than men that influences women’s experiences of pain. Researchers in the Pain Management Unit also looked at how men and women react to chest pain in 150 patients referred to the hospital

“Chest pain is associated with coronary heart disease, angina and heart attacks, so it is understandable that chest pain is a cause of great anxiety for patients and that anxiety has an important role in the experience of chest pain,” said Dr Keogh.

”This research is also consistent with studies that suggest that men and women experience chest pain in different ways and that, compared to men, women can sometimes report more intensive pain and nausea.”

Women have what is called ‘anxiety sensitivity’; this is the tendency to be fearful of anxiety-related sensations resulting in increased heart rate and seems to be important in the experience of pain sensations.

“Gender can be profitably examined as a potential predictor of pain experience, and in particular, pain following treatment, but it is too early to say exactly how gender-specific interventions can be tailored to address these potentially important differences,” said Dr Keogh.

“However, evidence is certainly converging to suggest that accounting for greater differences may increase the overall effectiveness of treatments.”

Source of Press release: http://www.bath.ac.uk/ews/releases
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