Relationship between perceived academic stress and Interleukin 6 levels in health students

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Paola Vernaza
Jayson Chavarria
Rosa Amalia Dueñas Cuellar
Victoria Eugenia Niño
Gloria Inés Ávila González Ávila González
Julio César Klínger Hernández
Jerónimo Londoño Prieto


Academic stress, IL-6, Physiotherapy, Medicine, Psyconeuroinmunology


Background: Academic stress is an important research topic due to the effect it has on the
quality of life of students, future professionals and therefore, adult contributors in a society.
It has been shown that students in the health field face additional stressors specific from
their careers, and suffer greater stress than the general population of the same age.
Methods: 52 students, 23 from Physiotherapy and 29 from Medicine programs were
surveyed with Academic Stressors Academic Scale (SAS) to know academic stress level
and IL-6 was quantified in serum.
Results: It was found that students who perceive the academic semester as stressful
“fairly often” and “many times”, increases in 50%, 75% and 76.9% during the semester;
while “anxiety/distress” feeling was predominant. The most frequent SAS scale factors
were “methodological deficiencies”, “student overload”, “beliefs about performance”, “lack
of content value”, “participation” and “exams”
Conclusions: The study revealed an IL-6 increment, and their association with
“Methodological Deficiencies” at 1st moment. This study showed the importance of
academic stressors identification at same time that it is a call to construct strategies to
reduce stressors in University context


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