Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria
versão impressa ISSN 1516-4446
CUNHA, Paulo J et al. Neuropsychological impairments in crack cocaine-dependent inpatients: preliminary findings. Rev. Bras. Psiquiatr. [online]. 2004, vol.26, n.2, pp. 103-106. ISSN 1516-4446. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-44462004000200007.
OBJECTIVE: Although cocaine use is a significant public health problem, there is relative paucity of scientific data on long-term neurocognitive consequences of the exposure to the substance. METHODS: This study examined the association between crack cocaine dependence and neuropsychological performance. An extended battery of neuropsychological tests was administered to 15 abstinent cocaine abusers, inpatients in abstinence for two weeks, and 15 non-drug-using control subjects matched for age, gender, education, socio-economic status, handedness and IQ. RESULTS: The preliminary findings showed statistical significance (p<0,05) on differences of performance in attention, verbal fluency, verbal memory, visual memory, learning ability and executive functions. CONCLUSIONS: These results represent evidences that cocaine abuse is associated with decrements in cognitive functioning, similar to cognitive disorders associated to prefrontal and temporal brain impairments. Knowledge of specific cognitive deficits in cocaine abusers may be useful for designing more effective substance abuse prevention and treatment programs.
Palavras-chave : Crack cocaine; Substance-related disorders; Cognition; Neuropsychological tests.