Personality Traits May Predict High BP in Women

Article excerpt

DENVER -- Age and low hostility are independent predictors of high blood pressure in women over a 10-year period, suggesting a link between certain personality traits and disease development, Jocelyne Leclerc reported in a poster presentation at the annual meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society.

Ms. Leclerc and her colleagues at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, compared the results of ambulatory blood pressure monitoring and personality questionnaires of 112 healthy adults at baseline and again after 10 years. The study group included 54 men and 63 women; the average age was 40 years at baseline. Average blood pressure monitoring was conducted on predetermined days when the patients did not expect significant stressful events.

Overall, blood pressure and personality traits remained stable over the 10 years. Both systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) were significantly correlated with depression at baseline. Baseline hostility predicted increased DBP 10 years later, and baseline SBP predicted hostility 10 years later. …