Association between alexithymia and neuroendocrine response to psychological stress in police academy recruits

Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2006 Jul;1071:425-7. doi: 10.1196/annals.1364.034.


Alexithymia has been associated with both posttraumatic stress disorder and neuroendocrine responses to stress. This study examined the relationship of alexithymia to salivary cortisol and 3-methoxy-4-hydroxy-phenylglycol (MHPG) in a sample of police academy recruits exposed to a video stress challenge. Alexithymia scores were negatively associated with catecholamine response to the video challenge but no association was found between alexithymia scores and cortisol reactivity.

MeSH terms

  • Affective Symptoms / psychology*
  • Depressive Disorder / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Hydrocortisone / metabolism
  • Methoxyhydroxyphenylglycol / metabolism
  • Models, Psychological
  • Neurosecretory Systems / physiopathology*
  • Police*
  • Saliva / metabolism
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / physiopathology
  • Stress, Psychological / physiopathology*
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology*


  • Methoxyhydroxyphenylglycol
  • Hydrocortisone