Cue Reactivity as a Predictor of Drinking Among Male Alcoholics

Damaris J. Rohsenow, Peter M. Monti, Anthony V. Rubonis, Alan D. Sirota, Raymond S. Niaura, Suzanne M. Colby, Sandra Munroe Wunschel, David B. Abrams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Social learning theories suggest that conditioned responses may increase the risk for relapse. Responses to alcohol use cues (cue reactivity) are associated with variables suggestive of risk but little research exists on the relationship of cue reactivity to treatment outcome. Alcoholic men admitted for detoxification to a treatment program (n = 45) underwent a cue reactivity assessment protocol, and 91% received 3-month follow-up interviews. Greater salivary reactivity predicted greater frequency of drinking during follow-up. Attentional factors added independent variance to the prediction of drinking outcome, with greater attention to stimulus or to response predicting less drinking. Cue reactivity did not predict length of hospital stay or latency to first drink. Results are discussed in the context of information processing, social learning theories, and clinical implications for relapse prevention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)620-626
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of consulting and clinical psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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