J Korean Biol Nurs Sci.  2017 Aug;19(3):206-213. 10.7586/jkbns.2017.19.3.206.

An Exploratory Study on Occupational Stress and Anxiety Through Salivary Cortisol and Self-Report Scale in Korean Nurses on Shift and Regular Work

Affiliations
  • 1Department of nursing, Inha University, Incheon, Korea. mhsuh@inha.ac.kr

Abstract

PURPOSE
The purpose of the study was to compare salivary cortisol levels, self-reported occupational stress, and anxiety before duty to those after duty in the shift and regular work nurses, and the relationships among them.
METHODS
Thirty nurses working in a tertiary hospital participated in the study. Salivary specimens were collected before and after daytime duty for 2 days. The occupational stress and state anxiety were also evaluated using self-report questionnaires.
RESULTS
The average level of salivary cortisol was 0.40 µg/dL before duty and 0.20 µg/dL after duty in Korean nurses. Overall levels of salivary cortisol, self-reported occupational stress, and anxiety were higher in shift working nurses than regular working nurses. In shift working nurses, the salivary cortisol gap between before and after duty was attenuated on the first day of daytime duty. Significant positive correlation was found between the level of cortisol before duty and anxiety after duty.
CONCLUSION
Strategies to alleviate occupational stress and anxiety are needed for shift working nurses, especially for those with elevated levels of cortisol. It seems to require 3days to recover from attenuated cortisol rhythm during nighttime duty in shift working nurses.

Keyword

Cortisol; Stress; Anxiety; Nurses

MeSH Terms

Anxiety*
Hydrocortisone*
Tertiary Care Centers
Hydrocortisone
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