Aim: To investigate the usefulness of salivary chromogranin A (CgA) and cortisol as stress markers, and the effects of distraction on the suppression of stress in children. Methods: We examined salivary CgA and cortisol responses before and after venipuncture in hospitalized children with and without distraction using a kaleidoscope. Results: Salivary CgA levels immediately after venipuncture were significantly higher than those immediately before it, and at 60 min after venipuncture they were significantly lower than those immediately after it. However, salivary cortisol showed no significant differences at any of the three time points. In contrast, distracted by the kaleidoscope, there were no significant differences in salivary CgA and cortisol levels at all three time points.
Conclusion: In children, salivary CgA level is a useful marker of stress. As an index of the effect of distraction, the measurement of salivary CgA is useful.