Acute Stress and Anxiety in Medical Residents on the Emergency Department Duty
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AuthorGonzález-Cabrera, Joaquín; Fernández-Prada, María; Iribar-Ibabe, Concepción; Molina-Ruano, Rogelio; Salinero-Bachiller, María; Peinado Herreros, José María
Acute stressCortisolMedical residentEmergency Department-duty dayAnxiety
González-Cabrera, Joaquín; et. al. Acute Stress and Anxiety in Medical Residents on the Emergency Department Duty. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 506 [http://hdl.handle.net/10481/51438]
The objectives of this longitudinal study were to compare salivary cortisol release patterns in medical residents and their self-perceived anxiety levels between a regular working day and a day when on call in the emergency department (ED-duty day) and to determine any differences in cortisol release pattern as a function of years of residency or sex. The study included 35 residents (physicians-in-training) of the Granada University Hospital, Granada, Spain. Acute stress was measured on a regular working day and an ED-duty day, evaluating anxiety-state with the Spanish version of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory. Physiological stress assessment was based on salivary cortisol levels. Cortisol release concentrations were higher on an ED-duty day than on a regular working day, with a significantly increased area under the curve (AUC) (p < 0.006). This difference slightly attenuated with longer residency experience. No gender difference in anxiety levels was observed (p < 0.001). According to these findings, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activity and anxiety levels of medical residents are higher on an ED-duty day than on a regular working day.