Stress and Psychological Factors

  • Stefan Höfer
  • Nicole Pfaffenberger
  • Martin KoppEmail author


This chapter explains how psychosocial factors like stress at work and/or home, depression, and anxiety, as well as personality characteristics contribute to the risk of developing coronary heart disease (CHD). Psychosocial factors seem to affect the heart through neuroendocrine (i.e., hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis) and behavioral (i.e., sedentary lifestyle) pathways. In clinical practice, guidelines for the assessment of stress and psychological factors should be released. In case of elevated risk, multimodal, cognitive-behavioral intervention should be offered. New technologies (i.e., web applications) should be ­considered for the application of programs aimed at lifestyle change. Furthermore, the development of gender-specific approaches in cognitive-behavioral intervention guidelines should be an important aspect of future research.


Stress Anxiety Depression Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stefan Höfer
    • 1
  • Nicole Pfaffenberger
    • 2
  • Martin Kopp
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Medical PsychologyInnsbruck Medical UniversityInnsbruckAustria
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry and PsychotherapyInnsbruck Medical UniversityInnsbruckAustria
  3. 3.Department of Sport ScienceUniversity of InnsbruckInnsbruckAustria

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