Coagulation activity before and after acute psychosocial stress increases with age

Wirtz, Petra H.; Redwine, Laura S; Baertschi, Carmen; Spillmann, Maria; Ehlert, Ulrike; von Känel, Roland (2008). Coagulation activity before and after acute psychosocial stress increases with age. Psychosomatic medicine, 70(4), pp. 476-81. Baltimore, Md.: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins 10.1097/PSY.0b013e31816e03a5

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OBJECTIVE: To assess whether stress further increases hypercoagulation in older individuals. We investigated whether acute stress-induced changes in coagulation parameters differ with age. It is known that hypercoagulation occurs in response to acute stress and that a shift in hemostasis toward a hypercoagulability state occurs with age. However, it is not yet known whether acute stress further increases hypercoagulation in older individuals, and thus may increase their risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD). METHODS: A total of 63 medication-free nonsmoking men, aged between 20 and 65 years (mean +/- standard error of the mean = 36.7 +/- 1.7 years), underwent an acute standardized psychosocial stress task combining public speaking and mental arithmetic in front of an audience. We measured plasma clotting factor VII activity (FVII:C), fibrinogen, and D-dimer at rest, immediately, and 20 minutes after stress. RESULTS: Increased age predicted greater increases in fibrinogen (beta = 0.26, p = 0.041; DeltaR(2) = 0.05), FVII:C (beta = 0.40, p = .006; DeltaR(2) = 0.11), and D-dimer (beta = 0.51, p < .001; DeltaR(2) = 0.18) from rest to 20 minutes after stress independent of body mass index and mean arterial blood pressure. General linear models revealed significant effects of age and stress on fibrinogen, FVII:C, and D-dimer (main effects: p < .04), and greater D-dimer stress reactivity with older age (interaction age-by-stress: F(1.5/90.4) = 4.36, p = .024; f = 0.33). CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that acute stress might increase vulnerability in the elderly for hypercoagulability and subsequent hemostasis-associated diseases like CVD.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy
04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurology > Centre of Competence for Psychosomatic Medicine

UniBE Contributor:

Wirtz, Petra Hedwig and von Känel, Roland


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health






Lippincott Williams & Wilkins




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 15:06

Last Modified:

17 Sep 2014 08:20

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URI: (FactScience: 132938)

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