While legend has it that men cannot endure the pain of childbirth, new research shows that women genuinely are the more delicate sex, as men can tolerate higher levels of pain, and are less likely to react to it.
Pain scientist Dr. Osama Tashani of Leeds Metropolitan University recruited 200 British and Libyan volunteers to inflict pain on, in a study which he claimed to be the first of its kind.
Those who took part in the study were jabbed in the hand with a 1cm-wide blunt tip and had their blood supply to a raised hand restricted as scientists monitored sensitivity, endurance and willingness to report pain.
Tashani said men had higher thresholds of pain and reported less pain intensity than women.
The results were the same, regardless of nationality.
British volunteers could not endure as much pain as Libyan participants but were more willing to report it.
Gender stereotypes were stronger among Libyan participants, as men were more reluctant to admit to feeling pain.
“Traditionally, high levels of stoicism are associated with men and high levels of sensitivity are associated with women,” Dr. Tashani said.
“Some ethnic groups are described as more stoic, while others are viewed as more free in expressing their pain behavior.
“We did not detect differences in pain unpleasantness.”
James Gilbert | Elite.