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Type As get a facial.

Type As get a facial

Some researchers regard Type A behavior as a critical factor in promoting heart disease; others see it as irrelevant (SN: 1/23/88, p.53). Scientists in the former camp often cite enduring hostility and anger as particularly "toxic" Type A features.

So it comes as a surprise that Type A men are not distinguished from easygoing Type Bs by an abundance of angry or contemptuous facial expressions. Instead, Type As more often glare and look disgusted, report psychologist Margaret A. Chesney of the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and her colleagues in the May/June PSYCHOSOMATIC MEDICINE.

Nevertheless, glares and disgusted looks are probably indirect expressions of hostility, the researchers contend. These two facial patterns may help in identifying individuals prone to heart disease, they suggest.

Eye blinking, teeth clenching and other facial movements have been noted among Type A men, but Chesney and her co-workers are the first to measure Type A facial expressions systematically. Using criteria developed by UCSF psychologists Paul Ekman and Wallace V. Friesen, who participated in the research, the team analyzed facial movements videotaped during interviews of 24 Type A men and 24 Type B men.

Most volunteers were managers at an aerospace firm who had probably learned to monitor and suppress angry expressions, the scientists remark. But Type As made considerably more hostile comments about others during the interviews, as well as displaying more disgusted looks and glares. The researchers define "glaring" as lowering the brows, raising the upper eyelids and directing the gaze at another person.

In a long-term, ongoing study of men on the West Coast, directed by Chesney, hostile speech strongly predicts the eventual development of heart disease. Scientists do not yet know whether the Type As who utter hostile remarks while glaring and looking disgusted are at greatest risk for heart disease.
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Title Annotation:type A behavior, facial expression, and heart disease
Publication:Science News
Date:Jul 7, 1990
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