Neuropsychological status, depression, and autonomic deficit in male alcoholics

M. R. O'Leary, J. Cram, C. Cummings, D. L. Cook, R. D. Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Individual differences in neuropsychological status, drinking history, and depression as they relate to autonomic functioning in a sample of hospitalized alcoholics was investigated. Neuropsychological tests (Category Test, Trailmaking Test, Block Design, and Digit Symbol), the Alcohol Use Inventory, and the Beck Depression Inventory were administered to each subject (N=25). Pupillary response to light and dark conditions was used as the measure of autonomic function and was assessed by means of a television pupillometer. The individual difference measures were regressed against the pupillometric data. Results indicate that the level of neuropsychological functioning plus subjects' self-report of severity of psychophysical withdrawal from alcohol explain 51 percent of the variance in the pupillary response pattern. These findings suggest that autonomic insufficiency in the remitted alcoholic is strongly associated with deficits in neuropsychological functions. Implications for future research and potential clinical utility of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-220
Number of pages10
JournalUnknown Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1980

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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