Neuropsychological impairments associated with antisocial personality and alcoholism

Date

1997-05

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Publisher

Texas Tech University

Abstract

The present study sought to extend previous research on neuropsychological impairments associated with antisocial personality and alcoholism in two ways. First, this study tried to clarify contradictory results among studies by providing a better homogeneity of subjects. A clear distinction between diagnoses of alcoholism, antisocial personality disorder, and antisocial behaviors was made.

Second, previous research suggests an association between localization of brain impairments with clinical diagnoses. The present study tried to clarify hypotheses relating diffuse brain impairments with alcoholism, and frontal lobe impairments with antisocial personality disorder.

Subjects were classified into one of five groups: (1) ALC, (2) ASPD, (3) ALC+AS, (4) ASPD+ALC, and (5) control group-AS, and were asked to complete several neuropsychological tests. Analysis of variance showed no significant difference between alcoholic and antisocial subjects on each of the neuropsychological test measure. However, discriminant analysis showed that, when the neuropsychological variables were considered together, six of the 13 measures were able to correctly classified 80.65% of alcoholic and antisocial subjects. Antisocial personality disorder tended to be associated with frontal lobe deficits but no definitive conclusion could be reached in regard to the hypothesis that alcoholism may produce diffuse brain impairments. Due to the small sample size, results found in this study are tentative and further research is needed to assess the generalization of the present findings to other population samples.

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