Effect of impulsivity on cardiovascular and subjective reactivity to smoking cues

Neal Doran, Dennis McChargue, Bonnie Spring

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Scopus citations


Individuals with high levels of impulsivity are more likely to smoke and may have greater difficulty quitting than other smokers. Although the specific mechanisms mediating this relationship are not explicitly known, one candidate is disproportionate cigarette craving in response to environmental smoking cues. We assessed the effect of impulsivity on three measures of cue reactivity. Regular smokers (n = 75) were exposed to a smoking cue and a neutral cue in 2 counterbalanced experimental sessions. Cigarette craving, heart rate (HR), and mean arterial pressure (MAP) were used to index cue reactivity. More impulsive smokers exhibited a disproportionate response to the smoking cue in terms of MAP (p = .009) but not HR or craving. Impulsive smokers may experience disproportionate cigarette craving in response to environmental smoking cues that are not reflected in self-report measures due to a relative lack of conscious awareness of the urge to smoke.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)167-172
Number of pages6
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2008



  • Cigarette smoking
  • Cue reactivity
  • Impulsivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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