Stress induced by the socially evaluated cold-pressor test cause equivalent deficiencies of sensory gating in male subjects with schizophrenia and healthy controls
Author/sRubio, G.; López-Muñoz, F.; Jurado-Barba, R; Martínez Gras, Isabel; Rodríguez-Jiménez, Roberto; [et al.]
Área/s de conocimientoPsicología
Materia/s Unesco3201.05 Psicología Clínica
It is known that patients with schizophrenia show a deficiency in the prepulse inhibition reflex (PPI). These patients display abnormalities in autonomic nervous system and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal function and may have an altered sensitivity to stress. To date, no studies have been carried out to determine the effect of acute stress on the PPI. We investigated whether there was a differential response in reactivity to acute stress caused by the socially evaluated cold-pressor test (SECPT) in a sample of 58 chronic male patients with schizophrenia and 28 healthy control subjects. PPI, salivary cortisol and heart rate (HR) were measured. The patients were evaluated in two sessions (with and without the SECPT) 72h apart and basal measurements were carried out and 30min post-startle probe. We found an increase in salivary cortisol levels and the HR with SECPT condition in both groups and a significantly lower PPI% in patients with schizophrenia. The most relevant findings of this study are that the impairment of the PPI is increased by stress. Stress-induced increase in cortisol in both groups, mainly in healthy control group which allows us to hypothesize that at least such deterioration may be due to the hypercortisolemia caused by the SECPT. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.