Males and females react differently to the same pain

It’s no secret that men and women are different. Diane Halpern, Ph.D., past president of the American Psychological Association, wrote an academic text, “Sex Differences in Cognitive Abilities.” Bruce Goldman, science writer at Stanford,1 reported in the preface to the first edition that:2

“At the time, it seemed clear to me that any between-sex differences in thinking abilities were due to socialization practices, artifacts and mistakes in the research, and bias and prejudice. … After reviewing a pile of journal articles that stood several feet high and numerous books and book chapters that dwarfed the stack of journal articles … I changed my mind.”

Researchers have discovered structural differences in the brains of men and women including a larger total brain volume in men and higher tissue density in the left amygdala, hippocampus and insular cortex. Amber Ruigrok, Ph.D., carried out the study revealing the asymmetric effect sex has on a developing brain. She said:3

“For the first time we can look across the vast literature and confirm that brain size and structure are different in males and females. We should no longer ignore sex in neuroscience research, especially when investigating psychiatric conditions that are more prevalent in either males or females.”

As scientists gather more information about the specific differences between men and women, it’s generated numerous questions. Roger Fillingim, Ph.D.,4 from the University of Florida, has spent years researching differences in pain perception and what implications they may …
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