Moore, C. (2007). An examination of psychological and cardiovascular responses to violent content in video games. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering, Vol 67(8-B), 2007. pp. 4717. Retrieved July 3, 2009, from PsycINFO database.
Researchers have attempted to understand possible risks to heart disease and other cardiovascular difficulties by examining the mechanisms involved in cardiovascular reactivity. Investigations of cardiovascular reactivity have documented physical and psychological stress, gender, ethnicity, and personality traits/states as some of the factors contributing to cardiovascular problems. In terms of gender and ethnicity, much research has shown that African-American males exhibit higher cardiovascular reactivity during tasks. Both chronic and acute stressors, including anxiety and hostility, have been shown as correlates with greater cardiovascular reactions. Environmental situations, such as witnessing and participating in violent acts, also serve to maintain an impact on reactivity. The study sought to examine if there was a link between anxiety and hostility levels and cardiovascular reactivity in response to participating in a violent video game. The shady also sought to determine if gender and perceived relevance of the stimuli affect cardiovascular and subjective measures. Among a sample of seventy-one young adult participants between the ages of eighteen and twenty-eight, heart rate increased over baseline measures while exposed to a psychological stressor. Although there were significant relationships between trait personality scores obtained prior to engagement in the video game task and scores following the video games, there were no significant increases in state measures in comparison to trait measures. In addition, no apparent gender differences were determined regarding the reporting of emotional states. Additional research is warranted to further examine the cardiovascular and emotional impact of sustained video game play. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved)