Purpose: Characteristics of the distressed (Type D) personality include negative affectivity (NA) and social inhibition (SI), which are associated with an increased risk of major adverse cardiac events and mortality among patients with coronary artery disease (CAD). The aims of this study were to examine: (1) the correlation of NA and SI with psychological characteristics, heart rate variability (HRV) indices, and lipids profiles and (2) the differences in psychological characteristics, HRV indices, and lipid profiles between patients with CAD with Type D personality and those with non-Type D personality. Method: A cross-sectional study was conducted on 168 patients with CAD. The Taiwanese 14-item Type D Scale, Chinese Hostility Inventory-Short Form, Beck Depression Inventory-II, Beck Anxiety Inventory, and Anger Rumination Scale were administered to all of the participants. The raw signals of electrocardiograms were recorded over a 5-min baseline resting period and then transformed to HRV indices representing short-term cardiac autonomic activations. Lipid profiles were acquired from patients’ medical records. Results: NA was positively correlated with hostility, depression, anxiety, and anger rumination. With respect to pathophysiological mechanisms for CAD with Type D personality, NA was negatively correlated with standard deviation of all normal-to-normal intervals (SDNN) and total power of HRV and positively correlated with total cholesterol. SI was positively correlated with suppressive hostility behavior and anger rumination; however, SI was not significantly correlated with expressive hostility behavior, or HRV indices and lipid profiles. Conclusion: Pathophysiological mechanisms leading to higher rates of adverse outcomes in CAD in individuals with Type D personalities may involve cardiac autonomic imbalance and lipid dysregulation.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Applied Psychology