Association of psychological stress with skin symptoms among medical students

Ghada A. Bin Saif, Hala M. Alotaibi, Abdullateef A. Alzolibani, Noor A. Almodihesh, Hamad F. Albraidi, Najed M. Alotaibi, Gil Yosipovitch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objectives: To evaluate the association between psychological stress and skin symptoms among medical students. Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out between January and June 2015. Electronic survey consists of Perceived Stress Questionnaire (PSQ) and Self-Reported Skin Complaints Questionnaire were distributed to all 1435 undergraduate students at College of Medicine, King Saud University (KSU), Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Results: Final analysis was performed on data from 529 (36.9%) students. Students were divided into three groups: least stressed students, n=135, PSQ index <0.39; highly stressed students, n=136, PSQ index >0.61; and moderately stressed students, n=258. Older age, female gender, during exam weeks, and fourth and fifth years of medical school (all p<0.01) were associated with the highest perceived stress levels. When compared to least stressed students, highly stressed students suffered from more oily, waxy patches or flakes on scalp (p≤0.0001), dry/ sore rash (p≤0.0001), warts (p≤0.0001), pimples (p≤0.0001), itchy skin (p≤0.0001), hands itchy rash (p≤0.0001), hair loss (p≤0.0001), pull-out own hair (p=0.008), scaly skin (p=0.012), troublesome sweating (p=0.016), nails biting (p=0.028), and other rashes on face (p= 0.028). Conclusion: Various common skin conditions could appear in context of psychological stress among medical students.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-66
Number of pages8
JournalSaudi Medical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018


  • Medical students
  • Perceived Stress Questionnaire
  • Psychological stress
  • Skin symptoms
  • Stress perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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