Personality, Stress, and Heart Disease.

Like Hans Selye, Friedman and Rosenman were doctors, who noticed that people who had heart attacks behaved in a certain way. They were often competitive, impatient, aggressive, and found it difficult to relax. This pattern of behaviour was so common in people who suffered from heart attacks that they classified them as Type A personalities.

Friedman and Rosenman designed a questionaire to identify Type A personality and used this in a prospective longitudinal study to find out if people with this pattern of behaviour were at greater risk of developing heart disease (Friedman & Rosenman, 1974).

They found that twice as many men classified as Type A personality developed heart disease as those who were classified as the opposite personality type, Type B personality. They concluded that Type A behaviour did increase the risk of getting heart disease.

However, later research failed to establish a link between Type A personality and heart disease. For example, Shekelle et al (1985) conducted a large scale longitudinal study that failed to establish a link between Type A personality and heart disease.

Research has identified anger and hostility, rather than Type A behaviour in general, as the critical factors (variables) in raising the risk of developing of heart disease.

Click here to take a personality questionnaire to identify if you have a Type A or Type B personality.

Click here to take a Type A or Type B personality test designed for young people.

Click here to take an inkblot test that claims to reveal your unconscious mind.

Click here to take the Meyers-Briggs personality test.

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