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The contribution of executive functions deficits to impaired episodic memory in individuals with alcoholism

Noël, Xavier
Brevers, Damien
Campanella, Salvatore
Hanak, Catherine
Kornreich, Charles
Verbanck, Paul
Published in Psychiatry Research. 2012, vol. 198, no. 1, p. 116-122
Abstract Individuals with alcoholism commonly exhibit impaired performance on episodic memory tasks. However, the contribution of their impaired executive functioning to poor episodic memory remains to be clarified. Thirty-six recently detoxified and sober asymptomatic alcoholic men and 36 matched non-alcoholic participants were tested for processing speed, prepotent response inhibition, mental flexibility, coordination of dual-task and a verbal episodic memory task. Compared with non-alcoholic individuals, the alcoholic patients showed impaired executive functions combined with below normal performance on both free and delayed recall. In contrast, processing speed, cued recall and recognition were preserved. Regression analyses revealed that 47% of alcoholics' episodic memory's free recall performance was predicted by mental flexibility and that 49% of their delayed recall performance was predicted by mental flexibility, manipulation of dual-task and prepotent response inhibition. Regarding participants' executive predictors of episodic memory performance, the slopes of β coefficients were significantly different between the two groups, with alcoholics requiring more their executive system than non-alcoholics. Once detoxified, alcoholic patients showed episodic memory deficits mainly characterized by impaired effortful (executive) processes. Compared with controls, patients used effortful learning strategies, which are nonetheless less efficient.
Keywords AdultAlcoholism/complicationsAnalysis of VarianceCognition Disorders/etiologyExecutive Function/physiologyFemaleHumansInhibition (Psychology)MaleMemory Disorders/complications/etiologyMemory, EpisodicMemory, Short-TermMiddle AgedNeuropsychological TestsPsychiatric Status Rating ScalesRegression AnalysisVerbal Learning
PMID: 22377577
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Article (Published version) (185 Kb) - document accessible for UNIGE members only Limited access to UNIGE
Research groups Affective sciences
Unité de psychopathologie et neuropsychologie cognitive (UPNC)
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NOËL, Xavier et al. The contribution of executive functions deficits to impaired episodic memory in individuals with alcoholism. In: Psychiatry research, 2012, vol. 198, n° 1, p. 116-122. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2011.10.007 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:29509

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Deposited on : 2013-08-30

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