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Sex differences in Stress responses : A multivariate analysis

By Richard W. J. Neufeld, Park and O. Davidson


The study examined the configuration of 10 behavioral, physiological, and subjective measures of stress among subjects classified on the basis of sex and exposure to a stressor (mutilated bodies) and a benign stimulus. Multivariate analysis of variance indicated highly significant main effects of stress and stimulus conditions but no Sex X Stimulus interaction, although separate univariate analyses were in the direction of higher subjective reactivity to threat on the part of females. Discriminant functions corresponding to the significant multivariate main effects showed heterogeneity in discriminant variance within and between the subsets of subjective, behavioral, and physiological measures. Postexperimental judgments of stress- and attention-eliciting stimulus properties did not differ between male and female judges suggesting that sex differences may have reflected differing modes of response to stimuli with similar properties for each sex. Implications for assessing stress-reducing treatments are briefly discussed. A recurring "problem " in the assessment o

Year: 1974
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