Drug and Alcohol Dependence 128 (2013) 206– 213
Lawrence P. Carter, Chad J. Reissig, Matthew W. Johnson, Margaret A. Klinedinst,
Roland R. Griffiths, Miriam Z. Mintzerd
- Background: Although concerns surrounding high-dose dextromethorphan (DXM) abuse have recently increased, few studies have examined the acute cognitive effects of high doses of DXM. The aim of this
study was to compare the cognitive effects of DXM with those of triazolam and placebo.
- Methods: Single, acute, oral doses of DXM (100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800 mg/70 kg), triazolam (0.25, 0.5 mg/70 kg), and placebo were administered p.o. to twelve healthy volunteers with histories of hallucinogen use, under double-blind conditions, using an ascending dose run-up design. Effects on cognitive performance were examined at baseline and after drug administration for up to 6 h.
- Results: Both triazolam and DXM produced acute impairments in attention, working memory, episodic
memory, and metacognition. Impairments observed following doses of 100–300 mg/70 kg DXM were
generally smaller in magnitude than those observed after 0.5 mg/70 kg triazolam. Doses of DXM that
impaired performance to the same extent as triazolam were in excess of 10–30 times the therapeutic
dose of DXM.
- Conclusion: The magnitude of the doses required for these effects and the absence of effects on some
tasks within the 100–300 mg/70 kg dose range of DXM, speak to the relatively broad therapeutic window of over-the-counter DXM preparations when used appropriately. However, the administration of
supratherapeutic doses of DXM resulted in acute cognitive impairments on all tasks that were examined.
These findings are likely relevant to cases of high-dose DXM abuse.
Received 17 April 2012
Received in revised form 21 August 2012
Accepted 23 August 2012
Available online 16 September 2012
Corrigendum to “Acute cognitive effects of high doses of dextromethorphan relative to triazolam in humans” [Drug Alcohol Depend. 128 (2013) 206–213]
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Acute cognitive effects of high doses of dextromethorphan relative to triazolam in humans 
Acute cognitive effects of high doses of dextromethorphan relative to triazolam in humans