Stress and coping styles are associated with severe fatigue in medical students.
ABSTRACT Fatigue is a common complaint among medical students and researchers consider it to be related to poor academic outcomes. The authors' goal in the present study was to determine whether stress and coping strategies were associated with fatigue in medical students. The study group consisted of 73 second-year healthy students attending the Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine. Participants completed a questionnaire about fatigue (Japanese version of Chalder Fatigue Scale), stress, stress coping (Japanese version of the Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations), overwork, and nocturnal sleeping hours. On univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses adjusted for age and gender, stress was positively associated with fatigue. In addition, after adjustment for age, gender, and emotion- and task-oriented stress coping activities, avoidance-oriented stress coping activity was associated with fatigue. The results suggest that stress and the coping style are correlated with fatigue in medical students.
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ABSTRACT: Fatigue is a common symptom in both sick and healthy people. We examined autonomic nervous alterations associated with fatigue to clarify the mechanisms underlying fatigue. The study group consisted of 19 healthy participants who performed a 2-back test for 30 min as a fatigue-inducing mental task session. Before and after the session, they completed the advanced trail making test (ATMT) for 30 min for mental fatigue evaluation, subjective scales to measure fatigue sensation, and underwent electrocardiography to allow assessment of autonomic nerve activities. After the fatigue-inducing task, the total error counts on the ATMT tended to increase (P = 0.076); the ATMT for total trial counts (P = 0.001), the subjective level of fatigue (P < 0.001), and the % low-frequency power (%LF) (P = 0.035) increased significantly; and the % high-frequency power (%HF) decreased compared with before the fatigue-inducing task although this did not reach the statistical significance (P = 0.170). Although LF measured in absolute units did not change significantly before and after the fatigue-inducing task (P = 0.771), and HF measured in absolute units decreased after the task (P = 0.020). The %LF and LF/HF ratio were positively associated with the daily level of fatigue evaluated using Chalder's fatigue scale. In addition, %HF was negatively associated with the fatigue score. Increased sympathetic activity and decreased parasympathetic activity may be characteristic features of both acute and daily levels of fatigue. Our findings provide new perspectives on the mechanisms underlying fatigue.Behavioral and Brain Functions 01/2011; 7:46. · 2.13 Impact Factor