The Effects of Repeated Pain Measurement to Injury Pictures on Cognitive and Affective Empathy in Medical Students

통증사진에 대한 반복적 통증평가가 의대생의 인지적 공감과 정서적 공감에 미치는 영향

  • Received : 2016.10.18
  • Accepted : 2016.12.19
  • Published : 2017.01.28


To develop a more efficient computer-based empathy program that enables medical students to increase their empathy levels, and to test its applicability to medical students. We developed PACP (the Pain Assessment Computer Program) for measurement of medical students' levels of recognition of another's pain. An empathy questionnaire was administered to 145 medical students before and after the PACP. In the high empathy group, the scores for cognitive empathy increased significantly after completion of the PACP, while affective empathy scores showed no significant change. In contrast, in the low empathy group, both cognitive and affective empathy scores increased significantly after the PACP. The PACP effectively increased cognitive empathy for the high empathy group, and increased both cognitive and affective empathy, particularly for the low empathy group. Given the fact that existing empathy education programs are time-consuming and costly, and the demand for more efficient empathy education is high, the PACP as a useful tool can be applicable to medical students, particularly those with low empathy in order to enhance their empathic abilities within a short period of time.


Pain;Empathy;Empathy Communication Education;Pain Assessment Program;Empathy Enhancement


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