To investigate the correlation between nurse job burnout and salivary lysozyme activity. The saliva samples of 131 subjects were collected at four time points for two consecutive days with saliva collection tubes. The acquisition time points were 8:00 (baseline concentration), 10:00 (morning), 15:30 (afternoon), and 17:30 (recovery period). At the same time every subjects completed the job burnout questionnaire to investigate their general demographic characteristics and job burnout level. The salivary lysozyme concentration was measured with ELISA. The data were analyzed by partial correlation analysis and multiple stepwise regression analysis. There were significant differences in the salivary lysozyme activity between subjects with different ages, working years, and education levels. The work period vitality and the average energy of ≤ 30 age group were higher than other two groups and the recovery energy was higher than >35 age group. Working period vitality, the average energy of group >15 years were less than ≤ 10 years group. The work period energy and the average energy of university (college) and above group were lower than high school (secondary) and the following group. Job burnout and its three dimensions had a significant negative correlation with salivary lysozyme concentration (P < 0.01). Depersonalization and emotional exhaustion were the negative impact factors for salivary lysozyme activity at baseline. Emotional exhaustion and personal fulfillment were the negative impact factors for salivary lysozyme activity during the working period. Personal fulfillment was the negative factor for salivary lysozyme activity during the recovery period and the average salivary lysozyme activity. Salivary lysozyme activity is sensitive for nurse job burnout, so it can be used as an objective evaluation index of job burnout.

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