Heroin-related attentional bias and monthly frequency of heroin use are positively associated in attenders of a harm reduction service

Louise Bearre, Patrick Sturt, Gillian Bruce, Barry T. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The relationship between heroin-related attentional bias (AB) and a proxy for dependence severity (monthly frequency of heroin use-injecting or inhaling) was measured in individuals attending a heroin harm reduction service. A flicker change blindness paradigm was employed in which change detection latencies were measured to either a heroin-related or to a neutral change made to a stimulus array containing an equal number of heroin-related and neutral words. Individuals given the heroin-related change to detect showed a positive relationship between heroin-related AB and the proxy for dependence severity; those given the neutral change showed a negative relationship. Both findings complement each other — and are consistent with the sending of more attention to heroin-related stimuli than neutral, the more severe is the dependence.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)784-792
Number of pages9
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Volume32
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • flicker paradigm
  • attentional bias
  • heroin dependence
  • alcohol dependence

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