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Cigarette craving increases after a psychosocial stress test and is related to cortisol stress response but not to dependence scores in daily smokers

  • Stress is known to induce cigarette craving in smokers, but the underlying mechanisms are widely unknown. We investigated how dependence severity, smoking habits and stress-induced cortisol secretion are associated with increased cigarette craving after a standardised laboratory stressor. Hundred and six healthy participants (50 men, age 18-19 years) underwent a standardised public speaking stress task. In all, 35 smoked daily (DS), 13 smoked occasionally (OS), and 58 never smoked (NS). Smoking was unrestricted until 2 h before stress onset. Plasma cortisol was measured before and up to 95 min after the stressor. All current smokers rated intensity of cigarette craving immediately before and immediately after the stressor using the Brief Questionnaire of Smoking Urges (BQSU). Cortisol levels significantly increased in response to stress in all groups. The magnitude of this stress response was significantly lower in DS compared with OS and NS but did not differ between OS and NS. Baseline BQSU scores were significantly higher in DSStress is known to induce cigarette craving in smokers, but the underlying mechanisms are widely unknown. We investigated how dependence severity, smoking habits and stress-induced cortisol secretion are associated with increased cigarette craving after a standardised laboratory stressor. Hundred and six healthy participants (50 men, age 18-19 years) underwent a standardised public speaking stress task. In all, 35 smoked daily (DS), 13 smoked occasionally (OS), and 58 never smoked (NS). Smoking was unrestricted until 2 h before stress onset. Plasma cortisol was measured before and up to 95 min after the stressor. All current smokers rated intensity of cigarette craving immediately before and immediately after the stressor using the Brief Questionnaire of Smoking Urges (BQSU). Cortisol levels significantly increased in response to stress in all groups. The magnitude of this stress response was significantly lower in DS compared with OS and NS but did not differ between OS and NS. Baseline BQSU scores were significantly higher in DS than OS. BQSU scores increased significantly during the stress period and were positively correlated to the cortisol response in the DS but were unrelated to their nicotine dependence scores. In OS, no change in cigarette craving could be observed. In daily smokers, cigarette craving is increased after compared with before stress exposure and is related to the magnitude of cortisol stress response rather than to severity of nicotine dependence. This result supports, but does not prove, the concept that hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal stimulation is one of the mechanisms how stress can elicit cigarette craving.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author:Arlette F. Buchmann, Manfred Laucht, Brigitte Schmid, Klaus Wiedemann, Karl F. Mann, Ulrich S. Zimmermann
URL:http://jop.sagepub.com/
DOI:https://doi.org/10.1177/0269881108095716
ISSN:0269-8811
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Year of first Publication:2010
Year of Completion:2010
Release Date:2017/03/25
Source:Journal of psychopharmacology. - ISSN 0269-8811. - 24 (2010), 2, S. 247 - 255
Organizational units:Humanwissenschaftliche Fakultät / Strukturbereich Kognitionswissenschaften / Department Psychologie
Peer Review:Referiert