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Effects of lorazepam and oxazepam on perceptual and procedural memory functions


Martin, JE and Matthews, AJ and Martin, F and Kirkby, KC and Alexander, JRM and Daniels, BA, Effects of lorazepam and oxazepam on perceptual and procedural memory functions, Psychopharmacology, 164, (3) pp. 262-267. ISSN 0033-3158 (2002) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1007/s00213-002-1220-1


Rationale: Lorazepam has been found to consistently impair performance on both episodic and perceptual priming tasks, whereas other benzodiazepines have shown perceptual priming to be preserved. However, it has recently been postulated that benzodiazepines may exert time-dependent effects on implicit memory processes after research findings indicated some benzodi-azepines, other than lorazepam, impair performance on priming tasks when tested at the time of peak plasma concentration level after benzodiazepine administration. Objectives: To compare time-dependent effects of lora-zepam and oxazepam on implicit memory tasks, specifically perceptual priming and procedural learning. Methods: Thirty-three healthy female undergraduates were randomised to one of three time groups (pre-peak, peak, post-peak) and administered placebo, 2.5 mg lora-zepam, and 30 mg oxazepam, in counterbalanced order, at 1-week intervals. Assessments included word-stem completion (perceptual priming) and rotary pursuit (procedural learning) tasks. Results: At all time intervals, lorazepam but not oxazepam significantly impaired perceptual priming but procedural learning was preserved under both drugs. Conclusions: These findings are consistent with previous research showing a differential effect of lorazepam in impairing perceptual memory but the notion that benzodiazepines exert time-dependent effects on implicit memory processes was not supported.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Applied and developmental psychology
Research Field:Educational psychology
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Behaviour and health
UTAS Author:Martin, JE (Dr Janine Martin)
UTAS Author:Matthews, AJ (Dr Allison Matthews)
UTAS Author:Martin, F (Associate Professor Frances Martin)
UTAS Author:Kirkby, KC (Professor Kenneth Kirkby)
UTAS Author:Alexander, JRM (Mr James Alexander)
UTAS Author:Daniels, BA (Dr Brett Daniels)
ID Code:24245
Year Published:2002
Web of Science® Times Cited:8
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2002-08-01
Last Modified:2003-05-08

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