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January 9, 2020 at 7:51 am

BBC Writes about Mischkowski Research on Acetaminophen and Role in Empathy

Dominik Mishcowski, portrait

Dr. Dominik Mishcowski

BBC Future talks about a study by Dr. Dominik Mischkowski, wondering “whether painkillers (acetaminophen) might be making it harder to experience empathy, in a story headlined “The medications that change who we are.”

Mischkowski is Assistant Professor of Psychology at Ohio University.

…This is something that Dominik Mischkowski, a pain researcher from Ohio University, has also noticed. “There is a remarkable gap in the research actually, when it comes to the effects of medication on personality and behaviour,” he says. “We know a lot about the physiological effects of these drugs – whether they have physical side effects or not, you know. But we don’t understand how they influence human behaviour.”

Mischkowski’s own research has uncovered a sinister side-effect of paracetamol. For a long time, scientists have known that the drug blunts physical pain by reducing activity in certain brain areas, such as the insular cortex, which plays an important role in our emotions. These areas are involved in our experience of social pain, too – and intriguingly, paracetamol can make us feel better after a rejection….

Read more at BBC Future.

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