Sensory decision theory analysis of the effects of anxiety and experimental instructions on pain

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Abstract

Used the procedures prescribed by the theory of signal detection (TSD) to investigate the effects of trait anxiety and experimental instructions, designed to manipulate the consequences of pain reports, on the focal pressure pain thresholds of 96 undergraduates who were chosen from a larger pool on the basis of their high and low scores on the Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale. The results indicate that both anxiety and instruction affected pain thresholds. The TSD analysis, however, revealed that these findings were due to differences in response bias. No differences in sensitivity were found. (32 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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