Prescription medication dependence and neuropsychologic function

Scott L. McNairy, Toshihiko Maruta, Robert J. Ivnik, David W. Swanson, Duane M. Ilstrup

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


The abuse of prescription drugs is an insidious complication among patients with chronic pain. This study examines cognitive intellectual functions in patients with chronic pain who are using prescribed analgesics, sedatives and hypnotics. A comprehensive battery of psychologic tests measuring intelligence, learning, memory, sensory-perceptual integrity, motor skills and general adaptive abilities was administered to 47 subjects. The subjects were patients admitted to a chronic pain management program, and they were divided into drug-dependent, drug-abusing and non-drug-abusing groups according to strictly defined criteria. Findings indicated that the prescribed use of these medications for pain over a prolonged time is detrimental to the cognitive function of such patients and complicates their clinical management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-177
Number of pages9
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1984

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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