Adolescent inpatients with a diagnosis of alcohol abuse (n=28), nonalcohol substance abuse disorders (n=15), or psychiatric disorders without substance abuse (n=46) were examined on measures of attentional, intellectual, and personality functioning. High scores on a personality measure, the Substance Abuse Proclivity Scale (SAP), was the best predictor of substance abuse in general. Alcohol abusers were differentiated from other substance abusers by their increased impairment on the Continuous Performance Test. Adolescents with alcohol abuse did not manifest the types of cognitive impairments associated with chronic alcoholism. These data suggest that certain attentional impairments may be associated with early onset alcohol abuse and that earlier conceptions of the role of attentional impairments in risk prediction for alcohol abuse are supported.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health