Anxiety may benefit elderly woman, but not men

March 14, 2008 2:27:56 PM PDT
Higher anxiety levels may help elderly women live longer but may harm older men. That's the finding of a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society.

It found that women with higher levels of anxiety -- at the start of the study -- live longer than others. But men with higher anxiety were more likely to die earlier.

Scientists say the research indicates that anxiety may have a protective effect on women, possibly causing them to seek medical attention more frequently than men. In contrast, increasing anxiety over time is more detrimental to men.