Gender, Pain, and Placebo Analgesia
The response to standard pain stimuli in males and females is investigated, together with the effect of informing participants about the effect of a painkiller. Physiological response to pain is recorded.
|Study Design:||Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Primary Purpose: Treatment
|Official Title:||Effect of Participant Gender, Experimenter Gender, and Drug-Related Information on Placebo Analgesia|
- Pain report, heart rate variability, skin conductance
- Subjective arousal
|Study Start Date:||September 2006|
|Study Completion Date:||December 2007|
The social context in which pain is reported has been found to modulate pain. Specifically, male participants reporting pain to female observers report significantly lower pain levels compared to male participants reporting to male observers. Female participants seem less affected by social context. This is a methodological problem in the study of pain and has consequences in the development of new drugs, and for pain research in general.
The present study has two aims: To investigate whether social context affects also the placebo response to pain, i.e. the reduced pain often observed after administration of a an inert substance the participants believes to be a painkiller. It is hypothesized that placebo analgesia will be larger in males reporting pain to females. Secondly, heart rate variability and skin conductance, measures of parasympathetic and sympathetic activity, will be recorded, to investigate if social context affects not only pain report, but also pain response.
|University Hospital of North Norway|
|Tromsø, Troms, Norway, N-9038|
|Principal Investigator:||Magne Arve Flaten, PhD||University of Tromso|