Presentation Title: Gender Differences in Impulsivity on Youth at Risk for Substance Use Disorders
Author Name(s): José R. Chimelis-Santiago, M.S., Ya Chai, Leslie Hulvershorn, M.D.
Abstract: This study objective was to assess the gender differences in impulsivity and psychiatric disorders in youth at risk for substance use disorders. This study analyzed the data obtained from a longitudinal neuroimaging research project. The sample (males n = 56 / females n = 56) were youth with disruptive behavior disorders (attention/deficit-hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, conduct disorder and unspecified disruptive behavior) matched on age, IQ, race, parental education, parental substance use, psychotropic medication use and trauma history. Impulsivity was measured by the UPPS-P-C, which assesses impulsivity distinguished by five components: urgency, lack of premeditation, lack of perseverance, positive and negative urgency and sensation-seeking. Mood disorders were assessed by the KSADS-PL. Significant gender differences were found in the total score of the UPPS-P-C (p = .003). Overall, male subjects demonstrated more impulsivity compared to females. Particularly, sensation seeking (p = .002) and lack of premeditation (p = .019) subscales drove those differences. Females had more lifetime affective disorders compared to males, specifically a greater proportion had past major depressive disorder (p = .042) and current anxiety disorders (p = .042). The next steps of the project will be to examine gender differences on neural responses to risky decision making.