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Keywords:

  • essential hypertension;
  • isolated clinic hypertension;
  • personality;
  • anxiety;
  • Type A behaviour pattern

Abstract

The aim of this study was to determine whether there are differences in personality between hypertension and normotension. Forty-two male patients with essential hypertension were divided into two groups after self-assessment of blood pressure, 18 with sustained hypertension and 24 with isolated clinic (white coat) hypertension, and were compared with 25 men with normotension on Spielberger's State-Trait Anxiety Inventory and the Jenkins Activity Survey. In line with hypotheses, the sustained hypertensive group showed higher levels of trait anxiety, Type A behaviour pattern, and hard-driving behaviours/competitiveness than the normotensive group, whereas isolated clinic hypertensives occupied an intermediate position between those two groups. Results provide support to the hypothesised relationship between personality and hypertension and stress the need of distinguishing sustained hypertension from isolated clinic hypertension. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.