Title

Relationship of social Support to Stress Responses and Immune Function in Healthy and Asthmatic Adolescents

Document Type

Article

Language

eng

Format of Original

10 p.

Publication Date

4-1998

Publisher

Wiley

Source Publication

Research in Nursing and Health

Source ISSN

0160-6891

Original Item ID

doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1098-240X(199804)21:2<117::AID-NUR3>3.0.CO;2-M; Shelves: RT1 .R48x Raynor Memorial Periodicals

Abstract

Although most clinicians believe that social support has beneficial effects on health, the mechanisms mediating this relationship have not been clearly established. We examined the direct effect of social support on several immune measures and its role in moderating the response to academic exams in healthy and asthmatic adolescents. Three types of students—healthy, mild asthma, and severe asthma—completed social support and stress questionnaires and gave blood samples during the midsemester and final exam periods. Social support and natural killer cell (NK) function showed a significant reduction during exams in both healthy and asthmatic adolescents. Social support, however, did not have a direct effect on immune responses. Nevertheless, high social support appeared to attenuate the magnitude of exam-induced reduction in NK activity, suggesting a role for social support in protecting against immune decrements during times of stress. © 1998 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Res Nurs Health 21: 117–128, 1998

Comments

Research in Nursing and Health, Vol. 21, No. 2 (April 1998): 117-128. DOI.

Donna McCarthy was affiliated with the University of Wisconsin - Madison at the time of publication.

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