Is experimentally induced pain associated with socioeconomic status? Do poor people hurt more?

Miljković, Ana and Stipčić, Ana and Braš, Marijana and Đorđević, Veljko and Brajković, Lovorka and Hayward, Caroline and Pavić, Arsen and Kolčić, Ivana and Polašek, Ozren (2014) Is experimentally induced pain associated with socioeconomic status? Do poor people hurt more? Medical Science Monitor, 20. pp. 1232-1238. ISSN 1643-3750

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BACKGROUND: The association of pain and socioeconomic status is widely reported, yet much less clearly understood. The aim of this study was to investigate the association of experimentally induced pain threshold and tolerance with socioeconomic status. ----- MATERIAL/METHODS: The study sample consisted of 319 adult subjects from the population of the island of Vis, Croatia, which was previously shown to have a high level of social homogeneity. A manual dolorimeter was used to measure mechanical pressure pain threshold (least stimulus intensity) and pain tolerance (maximum tolerance stimulus intensity) on both hands. Pain tolerance interval was defined as the difference between pain tolerance and threshold. Years of schooling and material status were used as socioeconomic estimates. ----- RESULTS: Both of the socioeconomic estimates were significantly correlated with pain threshold, tolerance, and tolerance interval (P<0.001). The mixed modeling analysis, controlled for the effects of age, gender, and 4 psychological variables, indicated that education was not a significant predictor in any of the 3 models. However, lower material status was significantly associated with lower pain tolerance (P=0.038) and narrower pain tolerance interval (P=0.032), but not with pain threshold (P=0.506). The overall percentages of explained variance were lower in the tolerance interval model (20.2%) than in pain tolerance (23.1%) and threshold (33.1%), suggesting the increasing share of other confounding variables in pain tolerance and even more so in tolerance interval model. ----- CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest a significant association between experimentally induced pain tolerance and tolerance interval with material status, suggesting that poor people indeed do hurt more.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This paper has been published under Creative Common Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) allowing to download articles and share them with others as long as they credit the authors and the publisher, but without permission to change them in any way or use them commercially.
MeSH: Croatia ; Humans ; Models, Statistical ; Pain Measurement/methods ; Pain Perception/physiology ; Pain Threshold/physiology ; Pain Threshold/psychology ; Physical Stimulation ; Socioeconomic Factors ; Surveys and Questionnaires
Departments: Katedra za psihijatriju i psihološku medicinu
Depositing User: Marijan Šember
Status: Published
Đorđević, VeljkoUNSPECIFIED
Brajković, LovorkaUNSPECIFIED
Hayward, CarolineUNSPECIFIED
Date: 17 July 2014
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2016 11:49
Last Modified: 17 Jul 2020 09:49
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