Stress Measurement Service


Stress and its consequences

Stress and its consequences

As of today, stress is a concept which has not yet been scientifically defined and thus cannot be easily measured: there is not a clearly identified biological parameter or clinical test allowing with certainty to provide on a scale, e.g. 1 to 10, the stress level of an individual.

One important aspect that has been scientifically shown is that stress can seriously modify the status of the cardiovascular system (e.g. the interactions between the cardiac activity, arterial blood pressure and respiratory activity) which in turns is largely regulated by the ANS. An observed alteration of the ANS, based on the modification of measureable parameters (directly or indirectly derived from electrocardiogram, respiration, and blood pressure curves) can then be the consequence of a stress situation.

The quantitative analysis of the cardiovascular signals tied to the ANS is realized thanks to a specific AMPS patented software tool named HeartScope, which allows to measure and to monitor over time the level of alteration of the biological parameters correlated to stress. Whenever the parameters show abnormalities, and depending on the degree of such abnormalities, it is possible to determine that the subject is not in healthy conditions and that the cause of this condition could be related to stress. On the contrary, i.e. when the parameters fall under normal ranges, it is possible to infer that most likely (100% certainty does not exist in medicine) the individual is not under stress.

Stress Measurement Service

The Stress Measurement in population groups

The stress measurement model offered by AMPS goes beyond the traditional method based on questionnaires and on the analysis of group/organization analysis because it allows the evaluation of the stress level in groups/organizations based on the quantitative assessment of specific physiological parameters related to the autonomic nervous system. The AMPS stress measurement model is based on the HeartScope software as well as an operational protocol created by a multidisciplinary team comprised of scientists and university professors (MDs, psychologists, and engineers).

The model includes:

- The selection of a sample set of statistically selected individuals (the evaluation can be performed at several different levels: at the global group/organization level, departmental level, or specific category level)

- The analysis of the sample set via a number of biological parameters, related to life-style and health situation.

- The execution of an autonomic test (similar to an electrocardiogram (ECG)) which, correlating the ECG traces with the respiration and, when possible, the blood-pressure, allows to asses alterations, if present, of the ANS. (test duration 20 min c.a.)

- The production of a global report (as opposed to subject-by-subject) over the statistical sample set which provides the different levels of stress in the group.

The target of the report generated on the subjects of the sample set is not to draw explicit conclusions about the stress level of each individual, but rather to provide an evaluation of the parameters of interest and verify whether the parameters vary with respect to universal reference values or with respect to other specific subsets of subjects.

The global report determines the organizational stress level of the group/organization, based on the normal or abnormally elevated percentages of the subjects with altered parameters, using well-defined statistical models and comparative tests. In fact, in the presence of a statistically significant modification of the parameters correlated to stress, we can infer that the group/organization environment is likely to be the source of the alterations being the sole common factor amongst the subjects of the sample (it thus assumed that external, non group-related factors can characterize all the subject of the statistical sample set).

The parameters analyzed can be monitored over time with the purpose of providing leaders with a tool for verifying the evolution of the stress levels within each sub-group and in general in the whole group.

The AMPS Service

AMPS can offer its HeartScope technology in several different ways, from licensing the executable software via an annual license fee, for a direct and fully independent usage (after the required training of the operators that will be performing the tests) to providing a fully integrated key-in-hand service (including equipment and personnel) and any of the desired scenarios between the 2 extremes (e.g. independent collection of the data from the subjects and delivery of “anonymized” data to AMPS for processing and reports production).

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