Drinking and future thinking: Acute effects of alcohol on prospective memory and future simulation
Paraskevaides, Theadora, Morgan, Celia J. A., Leitz, Julie R., Bisby, James A., Rendell, Peter G. and Curran, H. Valerie. (2009). Drinking and future thinking: Acute effects of alcohol on prospective memory and future simulation. Psychopharmacology. 208(2), pp. 301 - 308. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00213-009-1731-0
|Authors||Paraskevaides, Theadora, Morgan, Celia J. A., Leitz, Julie R., Bisby, James A., Rendell, Peter G. and Curran, H. Valerie|
Background: It has recently been shown that acute alcohol globally impairs ‘prospective memory’ (PM)—remembering to do something in the future (Leitz et al. in Psychopharmacology 205:379–387, 2009). In healthy, sober individuals, simulating future events at encoding enhances PM performance.
Aims: We therefore aimed to determine if future event simulation could attenuate the impairing effects of acute alcohol on PM.
Methods: Using a double-blind independent group design, 32 healthy volunteers were administered a 0.6-g/kg dose of ethanol or matched placebo. PM performance was assessed using a behavioural task, the ‘Virtual Week’, which was adapted to enable future event simulation in both remote and recent contexts. Episodic memory was indexed with a source memory task and planning with the Tower of London task.
Results: We replicated the finding of Leitz et al. that acute alcohol consumption impairs prospective memory for event-based tasks. Future event simulation significantly improved PM performance on these tasks and eliminated the PM deficit caused by acute alcohol consumption.
Conclusions: This is the first evidence that future event simulation can overcome alcohol-induced deficits in prospective memory and may have important clinical implications for the rehabilitation of chronic alcohol users.
|Journal citation||208 (2), pp. 301 - 308|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.1007/s00213-009-1731-0|
|Page range||301 - 308|
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|Place of publication||Germany|
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