Cognitive Impairments in Abstinent Male Residents of a Therapeutic Community for Substance-Use Disorders: A Five-Year Retrospective Study

Dan Shlosberg, Ben H. Amit, Gil Zalsman, Amir Krivoy, Haim Mell, Shaul Lev-Ran, Gal Shoval

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background and Objectives: Prior studies of residual cognitive deficits in abstinent substance-use disorder (SUD) patients, exhibited conflicting reports and a substantial patient selection bias. The aim of this study was to test the cognitive function of a sample of chronic abstinent SUD patients in a therapeutic-community. Methods: The IntegNeuro TM cognitive test battery was used for a retrospective cross-sectional study of cognitive functioning of an unselected sample (n = 105) of abstinent male residents of a therapeutic-community. The results were compared to a large age-, gender-, and education-matched normative cohort. Results: A significant negative deviance from the normal cohorts' mean was present in most of the cognitive test results and in all the cognitive domains that were tested. The most substantial deficit was found in the executive function domain (d = 1.02, 95%CI (±0.11)). Correct identification of facial emotions was significantly lower selectively in expressions of disgust and sadness. Substance-use starting at an early age (12.4 ± 0.8 years) was associated with lower performance in tests of sustained attention and impulsivity as well as with varied ability to identify correctly “negative” emotions in the emotion identification domain. Conclusions: This 5-year retrospective study demonstrates substantial cognitive impairments in an unselected sample of abstinent SUD patients. Impairment in multiple cognitive domains may lower the probability for remission and successful social integration. Early-age substance initiation may be associated with larger impairments in cognitive performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)538-548
Number of pages11
JournalSubstance Use and Misuse
Volume54
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 21 Mar 2019

Keywords

  • Substance use disorders (SUD)
  • adolescence
  • cognitive manifestation
  • therapeutic community

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Cognitive Impairments in Abstinent Male Residents of a Therapeutic Community for Substance-Use Disorders: A Five-Year Retrospective Study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this