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Effect of Personality on Alveolar Ventilation in Patients with Chronic Airways Obstruction

Br Med J 1970; 1 doi: (Published 31 January 1970) Cite this as: Br Med J 1970;1:273
  1. T. J. H. Clark,
  2. G. M. Cochrane


    A study has been made of the personality of 44 patients with chronic airways obstruction (using the Eysenck Personality Inventory), this being related to the difference between their observed Pv̄co2 and that predicted from their F.E.V.1. This was designed to test the hypothesis that those patients with a lower Pv̄co2 than predicted were the more extravert.

    The results showed a significant correlation between extraversion and the departure of Pv̄co2 from predicted Those patients having a lower Pv̄co2 than predicted were more extravert than those with a Pv̄co2 higher than predicted. There was no correlation between neuroticism and the Pv̄co2.

    These results support the hypothesis that the personality of a patient may play an important part in determining the alveolar ventilation found in patients with chronic airways obstruction. Patients known as “pink puffers” could more appropriately be named “pugnacious pink puffers.”