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Educación Médica

versión impresa ISSN 1575-1813


MAZZOGLIO Y NABAR, M.J. et al. The use of psychoactive substances in Anatomy students and its implication in learning. Educ. méd. [online]. 2011, vol.14, n.2, pp.129-132. ISSN 1575-1813.

Introduction. It is well-known that to increase their cognitive performance, many students turn to substances with the objective of being able to stay up more hours with a sharp attention focused on their study. However, these substances can interfere long term memory and can generate pharmaceutical dependency. Aim. To establish the prevalence of the use of psychoactive substances in University students and to relate it with sleeping patterns and social-economic-educational characteristics. Subjects and methods. Cross-sectional study using standardized questionnaire with multiple choice system administered to 122 Anatomy students in the year 2009. Statistic parameters were applied and an informed consent was demanded. Results. 79.51% said that they were not able to read all the topics and 36.89% said that they memorized concepts; 25% started to memorize subjects three days before the exam, 20.49% did it the previous day, and 19.67% memorized subjects the night before the exam without sleeping. 25.41% answered that they used substances for sleeping and 41.8% used some substances to increase studying hours, such as: coffee, energy drinks, psychopharmacological medication (45.09% modafinil and methylphenidate) and acetylsalicylic acid. The numbers of hours working correlated with the number of substances consumed (r = 0.89); students that where taking the subject again had less hours of sleep indirectly correlated with the use of psychoactives (r = -0.86). Conclusions. We recorded a high prevalence of consumptions of psychoactive substances, especially amongst students that are repeating the course and students that had jobs. It is of utmost importance to implement pedagogical tools that increase motivation, attention, and the associative capacities under an integrative-educational conception.

Palabras clave : Anatomy; Learning; Psychoactive substances; Teaching.

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