Interpersonal repression as a predictor of cancer

Soc Sci Med. 1982;16(4):493-8. doi: 10.1016/0277-9536(82)90058-2.


This paper examines the possible relationship between two specific styles of interactive behavior which reflect active and passive coping with stressful experiences, and attendant illness susceptibility. In a longitudinal study of 1353 inhabitants of a Yugoslav town from 1965 to 1975 data show that being a passive receiver of repression is associated with subsequent incidence of cancer. Being an active emitter of interpersonal repression is found more commonly among subjects who experience cardiovascular and other circulatory diseases later on. Data are presented and discussed in the framework of recent findings in environmental physiology, neuroendocrinology and psychosomatics.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / psychology
  • Dominance-Subordination
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations*
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / psychology*
  • Personality
  • Psychophysiologic Disorders
  • Repression, Psychology*
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology