Time course and mechanisms of mental stress-induced changes and their recovery: hematocrit, colloid osmotic pressure, whole blood viscosity, coagulation times and hemodynamic activity

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • Dolf de Boer
  • M Wood
  • C Ford
  • N Jessney

Colleges, School and Institutes


The mechanisms for stress-induced changes in hematocrit and blood viscosity are unclear. Twenty-two males completed experimental (30 min baseline, 10 min mental stress, 30 min recovery) and no-stress control conditions (70 min). Hemostatic and hemodynamic activity were measured throughout. Hematocrit, colloid osmotic pressure, and blood viscosity displayed parallel patterns: a progressive increase with stress, followed by a gradual recovery. Correlational and covariance analyses indicated that the increase in hematocrit may be mediated by arterial pressure whereas recovery may be mediated by colloid osmotic pressure. Analyses also indicated that acute changes in blood viscosity may depend on hematocrit. These data suggest that stress disturbs hematocrit, colloid osmotic pressure, and blood viscosity through arterial pressure. Poststress, elevated colloid osmotic pressure may drive its own recovery and that of hematocrit and blood viscosity.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)639-649
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2007


  • mental stress, venous pressure, whole blood viscosity, hematocrit, colloid osmotic pressure, coagulation times