The relationship between pain sensitivity and blood pressure in normotensives

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Hypertension has been found to be related to decreased sensitivity to painful stimuli. The current study explored whether this relationship extends into the normotensive range of blood pressures. Resting blood pressures were assessed in 60 male normotensives. Subjects then underwent a l min finger pressure pain stimulation trial. Pain ratings were inversely related to resting systolic blood pressure. This relationship was unrelated to emotional state or coping styles. Multiple regression analyses indicated that over one-third of the variance in pain ratings can be accounted for by resting blood pressure, coping style, and emotional state.

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