The role of Erlebnistypus personality features were investigated in 40 healthy subjects, as defined by the Rorschach Comprehensive System by Exner, in determining accuracy in recollecting acute tonic experimental pain, induced by the Cold Water Pressor Test. Multiple-regression analysis revealed that the difference between the number of movement answers and the number of chromatic answers in the Rorschach test, an index of general Extroversion, predicted accuracy in recollecting the qualitative features of pain, defined as affective and evaluative pain scores on the McGill Pain Questionnaire. Also, Extratensive subjects were less accurate than Introversive and Ambitent participants at recollecting sensory scores. The data suggest that general extroversion may have a role in individual differences in the higher cognitive processing of pain comprising pain memory.
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[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Several empirical studies have shown that personal characteristics act as differential variables, which determine how pain is experienced and how the chronic pain patient adjusts to pain. The main aim of the present research is to review the relationships between some dispositional characteristics and pain adjustment. Taking into account the empirical literature, 6 personality traits that are relevant to the pain experience have been selected: neuroticism, anxiety sensitivity, and experiential avoidance as risk factors that increase the probability of patients experiencing a disability; and extraversion, optimism, and resilience as personal resources that increase their capacity to manage pain effectively. The results suggest that it would be useful to include an assessment of normal personality structure during the multi-dimensional evaluation of a person with chronic pain. Understanding these individual personality characteristics will aid in designing pain intervention programs and help predict possible treatment outcomes.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2013 · Current Pain and Headache Reports