For Americans, fatigue and depression are two different independent states, while for the Russians, they make up two indivisible parts of a single asthenic syndrome. The researchers believe that this phenomenon is based on fundamental cultural differences between the Russians and Americans.
Vadim Gushin from the Institute of Biomedical Problems (Moscow, Russia) and his American colleagues Jennifer Boyd, Nick Kanas and Stephanie Saylor from University of California (San Francisco) assumed that peculiarities of cosmonauts’ and astronauts’ mood should depend on cultural peculiarities of representatives of different civilizations.
Russian physicians distinguish such a medical syndrome as asthenia: in case of asthenia, depression and fatigue come simultaneously. In the US medical society it is assumed that depression and fatigue are two different syndromes, and they are not tied together. The researchers predicted that the consequence of such difference in views of the Russian and US physicians would be real difference in stress and fatigue symptoms with Russian cosmonauts and US astronauts.
The researchers had an opportunity to analyze the state of Russian and American staff at the International Space Station in the course of a lengthy space assignment. The observation outcomes coincided with the prediction: Russian cosmonauts demonstrated symptoms of asthenia, i.e. fatigue and depression together, while with the US astronauts, fatigue and depression were not interconnected.
The discovery will help to deeper understand psychology of relationship in space collectives and to get ready for cosmonauts’ possible psychological problems during the international space expedition to the Mars.
Nadezda Markina | alfa
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