Executive dysfunction and clinical outcome in chronic alcoholics

Yasushi Moriyama, Masaru Mimura, Motoichiro Kato, Aihide Yoshino, Tsunekatsu Hara, Haruo Kashima, Akinobu Kato, Akiharu Watanabe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The purpose of this study was to investigate which of 12 neuropsychological tests predict alcoholic patients' alcohol-specific and/or alcoholic-nonspecific outcome. Our hypothesis was that the ecologically valid neuropsychological tests that measure executive function are better predictors of alcoholics' functional outcome. Methods: We administered 12 neuropsychological tests to chronic alcoholics. Included in the tests were tasks of Reaction Time, Symbol Digit Modalities, Figure Position, Digit Span, Block Design, Trail Making, and six subtests of a battery called the Behavioral Assessment of the Dysexecutive Syndrome (BADS). Previous investigators have suggested that the BADS has ecological validity. Twenty-two male alcoholics were compared with 15 nonalcoholic control subjects on these neuropsychological measures 7 weeks after detoxification. Two functional outcome indices, i.e., resumption of drinking and occupation, were evaluated 18 months after discharge. Results: The total profile score and the score on three of the six subtests of the BADS were lower in alcoholics than in nonalcoholic controls. Alcoholics' performance on the BADS predicted alcohol-nonspecific outcome (occupation) but not alcohol-specific (drinking) outcome. In contrast, other neuropsychological tests did not predict either of the two outcome indices. Conclusions: The BADS total profile score is related to alcohol-nonspecific outcome but not to alcohol-specific outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1239-1244
Number of pages6
JournalAlcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Aug
Externally publishedYes


  • Alcoholism
  • Behavioral Assessment of the Dysexecutive Syndrome (BADS)
  • Ecological Validity
  • Executive Function
  • Outcome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Executive dysfunction and clinical outcome in chronic alcoholics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this