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, 37 (5), 627-31

Acute Cigarette Smoking Reduces Latencies on a Smoking Stroop Test


Acute Cigarette Smoking Reduces Latencies on a Smoking Stroop Test

Catherine P Canamar et al. Addict Behav.


Rationale: Sensitivity to addiction-related cues, a type of attentional bias, may interfere with executive functions that are important in sustaining abstinence from drug abuse. Assessments of attentional bias in research participants who smoke cigarettes have used Smoking Stroop tasks, which are variations of emotional Stroop tasks in which the stimuli are smoking-related and neutral words.

Objectives: We aimed to determine the effect of resumption of smoking by deprived cigarette smokers on attentional bias.

Methods: Testing occurred twice on each of two test days. One test day began after overnight abstinence (13-16h) and the other after <1h of abstinence. The participants (n=51) smoked a cigarette between the two test sessions on each test day.

Results: Smokers exhibited attentional bias for smoking-related words and had longer response times after overnight abstinence than after brief abstinence. Cigarette smoking between sessions reduced response times on both test days with no interaction by stimulus type.

Conclusions: Smoking-related cues have distracting effects in smokers, and smoking reduces response latency, with no specific effect on attentional bias. The increase in response speed may contribute to a smoker's impression that abstinence hinders performance and that smoking reverses impairment.

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