Pain and Ethnicity in Athletes

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Barton P. Buxton
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David H. Perrin
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Ronald K. Hetzler
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Kwok W. Ho
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Joe H. Gieck
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The purpose of this investigation was to determine the relationship between ethnicity and acute pain response in male athletes. Subjects included 93 male athletes (age = 18.65 ± .58 years) of differing ethnicity. Each subject performed a Cold Pressor Test (CPT) and was evaluated for pain threshold and pain tolerance times. Two one-way analyses of variance were performed to analyze the data. The results indicated that significant differences existed in pain tolerance times between ethnic groups (p<.05). However, no differences were observed in pain threshold times. These findings support the existence of a difference in pain tolerance between ethnic groups in collegiate athletes.

Buxton is with the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, College of Education, and The John A. Burns School of Medicine, 1337 Lower Campus Road, Honolulu, HI 96822. Hetzler and Ho are with the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, College of Education, 1337 Lower Campus Road, Honolulu, HI 96822. Perrin and Gieck are with the University of Virginia, Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, Memorial Gymnasium, Charlottesville, VA 22903. Request reprints from Barton P. Buxton.

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