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Effects of Emerging Alcohol and Marijuana Use Behaviors on Adolescents' Neuropsychological Functioning Over Four Years.
J Stud Alcohol Drugs. 2015 Sep; 76(5):738-48.JS

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

Adolescence is a period of neuromaturation concomitant with increased substance involvement. Most substance use studies of adolescents have focused on categorical classifications (e.g., dependent vs. nondependent), but little is known about the influence of specific substance use behaviors on cognitive functioning in youth.

METHOD

This study prospectively evaluated the quantitative effects of different substance use behaviors on neuropsychological functioning. A cognitive test battery was administered at baseline (ages 12-14 years), before substance use initiation, and at follow-up (M = 4.0 years, SD = 2.0) to evaluate changes in verbal memory, visuospatial ability, psychomotor speed, processing speed, and working memory. Robust regressions examined substance use behaviors as predictors of neuropsychological functioning (N = 234).

RESULTS

Several substance use behaviors predicted follow-up neuropsychological functioning above and beyond effects of baseline performance on the same measure (ps < .05). Specifically, more alcohol use days predicted worse verbal memory (β = -.15) and visuospatial ability (β = -.19). More postdrinking effects (β = -.15) and greater drug use (β = -.11) predicted worse psychomotor speed. Processing speed was not predicted by substance involvement (ps > .05). Unexpectedly, more alcohol use predicted better working memory performance (β = .12).

CONCLUSIONS

The frequency and intensity of adolescent alcohol use may be more intricately linked to neuropsychological outcomes than previously considered. The low prevalence of substance use disorder in the sample suggests that subdiagnostic users may still experience adverse effects to verbal memory, visuospatial functioning, and psychomotor speed after initiating intense or frequent alcohol use.

Authors+Show Affiliations

San Diego State University/University of California San Diego Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology, San Diego, California.Department of Psychiatry, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California.Department of Psychology, San Diego State University, San Diego, California.Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina.Department of Psychiatry, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California.Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System, La Jolla, California. Department of Psychiatry, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

Language

eng

PubMed ID

26402354

Citation

Nguyen-Louie, Tam T., et al. "Effects of Emerging Alcohol and Marijuana Use Behaviors On Adolescents' Neuropsychological Functioning Over Four Years." Journal of Studies On Alcohol and Drugs, vol. 76, no. 5, 2015, pp. 738-48.
Nguyen-Louie TT, Castro N, Matt GE, et al. Effects of Emerging Alcohol and Marijuana Use Behaviors on Adolescents' Neuropsychological Functioning Over Four Years. J Stud Alcohol Drugs. 2015;76(5):738-48.
Nguyen-Louie, T. T., Castro, N., Matt, G. E., Squeglia, L. M., Brumback, T., & Tapert, S. F. (2015). Effects of Emerging Alcohol and Marijuana Use Behaviors on Adolescents' Neuropsychological Functioning Over Four Years. Journal of Studies On Alcohol and Drugs, 76(5), 738-48.
Nguyen-Louie TT, et al. Effects of Emerging Alcohol and Marijuana Use Behaviors On Adolescents' Neuropsychological Functioning Over Four Years. J Stud Alcohol Drugs. 2015;76(5):738-48. PubMed PMID: 26402354.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Effects of Emerging Alcohol and Marijuana Use Behaviors on Adolescents' Neuropsychological Functioning Over Four Years. AU - Nguyen-Louie,Tam T, AU - Castro,Norma, AU - Matt,Georg E, AU - Squeglia,Lindsay M, AU - Brumback,Ty, AU - Tapert,Susan F, PY - 2015/9/25/entrez PY - 2015/9/25/pubmed PY - 2016/4/22/medline SP - 738 EP - 48 JF - Journal of studies on alcohol and drugs JO - J Stud Alcohol Drugs VL - 76 IS - 5 N2 - OBJECTIVE: Adolescence is a period of neuromaturation concomitant with increased substance involvement. Most substance use studies of adolescents have focused on categorical classifications (e.g., dependent vs. nondependent), but little is known about the influence of specific substance use behaviors on cognitive functioning in youth. METHOD: This study prospectively evaluated the quantitative effects of different substance use behaviors on neuropsychological functioning. A cognitive test battery was administered at baseline (ages 12-14 years), before substance use initiation, and at follow-up (M = 4.0 years, SD = 2.0) to evaluate changes in verbal memory, visuospatial ability, psychomotor speed, processing speed, and working memory. Robust regressions examined substance use behaviors as predictors of neuropsychological functioning (N = 234). RESULTS: Several substance use behaviors predicted follow-up neuropsychological functioning above and beyond effects of baseline performance on the same measure (ps < .05). Specifically, more alcohol use days predicted worse verbal memory (β = -.15) and visuospatial ability (β = -.19). More postdrinking effects (β = -.15) and greater drug use (β = -.11) predicted worse psychomotor speed. Processing speed was not predicted by substance involvement (ps > .05). Unexpectedly, more alcohol use predicted better working memory performance (β = .12). CONCLUSIONS: The frequency and intensity of adolescent alcohol use may be more intricately linked to neuropsychological outcomes than previously considered. The low prevalence of substance use disorder in the sample suggests that subdiagnostic users may still experience adverse effects to verbal memory, visuospatial functioning, and psychomotor speed after initiating intense or frequent alcohol use. SN - 1938-4114 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/26402354/Effects_of_Emerging_Alcohol_and_Marijuana_Use_Behaviors_on_Adolescents'_Neuropsychological_Functioning_Over_Four_Years_ L2 - https://www.jsad.com/doi/abs/10.15288/jsad.2015.76.738 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -