Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Alcoholic Brain Syndrome

  • Glenn S. AshkanaziEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_2049


Alcoholic dementia; Alcoholic hallucinosis; Delirium tremens; Korsakoff’s syndrome; Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome

Short Description or Definition

“Alcoholic brain syndrome” is a collection of several syndromes associated with the acute or chronic use of alcohol, resulting in significant impairment on normal brain functioning (APA Dictionary of Psychology 2007), also referred to as alcohol-related dementia (ARD).


As mentioned in the definition, alcoholic brain syndrome encompasses several syndromes (newly named “major neurocognitive disorder (NCD)-substance/medication induced” in DSM-5):
  1. 1.

    Alcohol withdrawal delirium (ICD-9): A reversible condition that develops after cessation of chronic, extreme alcohol intake. Symptoms include disturbed consciousness (e.g., disruption in attention/concentration) and disruption in memory, orientation, and language beyond what would be expected from typical alcohol withdrawal.

  2. 2.

    Alcohol-induced persisting dementia (ICD-9): A...

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References and Readings

  1. Horton, L., Duffy, T., & Martin, C. (2014). Comprehensive assessment of alcohol-related brain damage (ARBD): Gap or chasm in the evidence? Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 22(1), 3–14.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  7. Ridley, N., & Draper, B. (2015). Alcohol-related dementia and brain damage. In J. Svanberg, A. Withall, B. Draper, & S. Bowden (Eds.), Alcohol and the adult brain. New York: Psychology Press.Google Scholar
  8. Ridley, N., Draper, B., & Withall, A. (2013). Alcohol-related dementia: An update of the evidence. Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy, 5, 3.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Rourke, S., & Grant, I. (2009). The neurobehavioral correlates of alcoholism. In I. Grant & K. M. Adams (Eds.), Neuropsychological assessment of neuropsychiatric and neuromedical disorders (3rd ed.). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
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  11. White, A. (2003). What happened? Alcohol, memory blackouts, and the brain. Alcohol Research & Health, 27(2), 186–196.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Clinical and Health Psychology, Clinical and Health Psychology ClinicCollege of Public Health and Health Professions, University of FloridaGainesvilleUSA