Gender Differences in Auto Injury Recovery
It's well-known that more women than men experience more symptoms following auto collisions. However, little is known about the reason for this disparity, or about the possible gender differences in coping with car crash injuries. A new study adds to the knowledge surrounding gender and recovery by examining possible gender differences in coping with neck pain following accident trauma.
The study involved 740 patients who were injured in auto collisions in Denmark. Participants completed questionnaires on socio-demographics, collision characteristics, and psychological distress. Three months after the initial injury, they completed a coping strategies questionnaire and were asked about neck pain intensity 12 months after the injury.
The chance of long-term neck pain was more than twice as high for women than for men. However, the researchers found no gender differences in coping. The coping strategies examined - distraction, reinterpreting, catastrophizing, and praying and hoping - showed no differences by gender. Thus, different coping strategies did not explain the different neck pain prognosis observed in women and men.
Carstensen TB, Frostholm L, Oernboel E, Kongsted A, Kasch H, Jensen TS, Fink P. Are there gender differences in coping with neck pain following acute whiplash trauma? A 12-month follow-up study. European Journal of Pain 2012;16(1):49-60. doi: 10.1016/j.ejpain.2011.06.002.