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  • Predicting relapse after alcohol use disorder treatment in a high-risk cohort: The roles of anhedonia and smoking. Journal of psychiatric research Nguyen, L., Durazzo, T. C., Dwyer, C. L., Rauch, A. A., Humphreys, K., Williams, L. M., Padula, C. B. 2020; 126: 1–7

    Abstract

    On average, two-thirds of individuals treated for alcohol use disorder (AUD) relapse within six months. There is a critical need to identify modifiable risk factors associated with relapse that can be addressed during AUD treatment. Candidate factors include mood disorders and cigarette smoking, which frequently co-occur with AUD. We predicted that co-occurrence of mood disorders, cigarette smoking, and other modifiable conditions will predict relapse within six months of AUD treatment. Ninety-five Veterans, 23-91 years old, completed assessments of multiple characteristics including demographic information, co-occurring psychiatric disorders, and medical conditions during residential treatment for AUD. Participants' alcohol consumption was monitored over six months after participation. Logistic regression was used to determine if, mood disorders, cigarette smoking status, alcohol consumption, educational level, and comorbid general medical conditions are associated with relapse after AUD treatment. Sixty-nine percent of Veterans (n=66) relapsed within six months of study while 31% remained abstinent (n=29). While education, comorbid general medical conditions, and mood disorder diagnoses were not predictors of relapse, Veterans with greater symptoms of anhedonia, active smokers, and fewer days of abstinence prior to treatment showed significantly greater odds for relapse within six months. Anhedonia and cigarette smoking are modifiable risk factors, and effective treatment of underlying anhedonic symptoms and implementation of smoking cessation concurrent with AUD-focused interventions may decrease risk of relapse.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2020.04.003

    View details for PubMedID 32403028

  • Medical Conditions Linked to Atherosclerosis Are Associated With Magnified Cortical Thinning in Individuals With Alcohol Use Disorders. Alcohol and alcoholism (Oxford, Oxfordshire) Durazzo, T. C., Nguyen, L. C., Meyerhoff, D. J. 2020

    Abstract

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies report widespread cortical thinning in individuals with alcohol use disorder (AUD), but did not consider potential effects of pro-atherogenic conditions such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus, hepatitis C seropositivity and hyperlipidemia on cortical thickness. The conditions are associated with regional cortical thinning in those without AUD. We predicted that individuals with concurrent AUD and pro-atherogenic conditions demonstrate the greatest regional cortical thinning in areas most vulnerable to decreased perfusion.Treatment-seeking individuals with AUD (n = 126) and healthy controls (CON; n = 49) completed a 1.5 T MRI study. Regional cortical thickness was quantitated via FreeSurfer. Individuals with AUD and pro-atherogenic conditions (Atherogenic+), AUD without pro-atherogenic conditions (Atherogenic-) and CON were compared on regional cortical thickness.Individuals with AUD showed significant bilateral cortical thinning compared to CON, but Atherogenic+ demonstrated the most widespread and greatest magnitude of regional thinning, while Atherogenic- had reduced thickness primarily in anterior frontal and posterior parietal lobes. Atherogenic+ also showed a thinner cortex than Atherogenic- in lateral orbitofrontal and dorso/dorsolateral frontal cortex, mesial and lateral temporal and inferior parietal regions.Our results demonstrate significant bilateral cortical thinning in individuals with AUD relative to CON, but the distribution and magnitude were influenced by comorbid pro-atherogenic conditions. The magnitude of cortical thinning in Atherogenic+ strongly corresponded to cortical watershed areas susceptible to decreased perfusion, which may result in morphometric abnormalities. The findings indicate that pro-atherogenic conditions may contribute to cortical thinning in those seeking treatment for AUD.

    View details for DOI 10.1093/alcalc/agaa034

    View details for PubMedID 32445335

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