The Influence of Extroversion on the Pain and Functional Disability experienced in Fibromyalgia Syndrome.

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Dalton, Carmel
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BA in Psychology
Dublin Business School
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The current study investigates the influence of degree of extroversion on the pain and disability experienced by individuals with Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS) sample. It is proposed that extroverts, while having higher pain threshold and tolerance levels, complain more about their pain as evidenced by their partaking in more pain behaviours. Introverts, while their levels of pain threshold and tolerance is lower and complaining less, are suggested to actually experience pain more. Participants were approached at the Tralee and Dublin Fibromyalgia Support Group meetings. In total, twenty five individuals with Fibromyalgia Syndrome took part in this study, twenty two were female and three were male. Two independent samples t tests were carried out which indicated that extroverts do not engage in significantly more pain behaviours than introverts, (t = 1.101, df= 23, P > 0.05, 2- tailed) and that introverts do not experience pain to a significantly greater degree than individuals who are extroverted, (t = 1.603, df= 23, P > 0.05,2- tailed). Two new hypotheses relating to the effect of age on pain experienced and of social support on aspects of functional disability are proposed and discussed.