Home > Verbal memory impairment in polydrug ecstasy users: a clinical perspective.

Kuypers, Kim PC and Theunissen, Eef L and van Wel, Janelle HP and de Sousa Fernandes Perna, Elizabeth B and Linssen, Anke and Sambeth, Anke and Schultz, Benjamin G and Ramaekers, Johannes G [PLOS One] . (2016) Verbal memory impairment in polydrug ecstasy users: a clinical perspective. Public Library of Science. PLoS ONE DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0149438

URL: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.137...

Ecstasy use has been associated with short-term and long-term memory deficits on a standard Word Learning Task (WLT). The clinical relevance of this has been debated and is currently unknown. The present study aimed at evaluating the clinical relevance of verbal memory impairment in Ecstasy users. To that end, clinical memory impairment was defined as decrement in memory performance that exceeded the cut-off value of 1.5 times the standard deviation of the average score in the healthy control sample. The primary question was whether being an Ecstasy user (E-user) was predictive of having clinically deficient memory performance compared to a healthy control group.

Conclusion: The combination of the acute and long-term findings demonstrates that, while clinically relevant memory impairment is present during intoxication, it is absent during abstinence. This suggests that use of Ecstasy/MDMA does not lead to clinically deficient memory performance in the long term. Additionally, it has to be investigated whether the current findings apply to more complex cognitive measures in diverse ‘user categories’ using a combination of genetics, imaging techniques and neuropsychological assessments.


Item Type:Evidence resource
Drug Type:CNS stimulants, New psychoactive substance
Intervention Type:AOD disorder, AOD disorder harm reduction
Source:PLOS One
Date:23 February 2016
Publisher:Public Library of Science
EndNote:View
Subjects:A Substance use, abuse, and dependence > Effects and consequences
B Substances > CNS stimulants > MDMA > Ecstasy
F Concepts in psychology > Cognition
G Health and disease > State of health > Physical health
G Health and disease > Substance use disorder > Multiple substance use (Poly-drug /Poly-substance)

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