Prescription opioid-dependent subjects had significantly decreased anisotropy in axonal pathways specific to amygdala as well as the internal and external capsules. Also, significant decreases in functional connectivity were found for seed regions that included the anterior insula, nucleus accumbens, and amygdale subdivisions. The longer duration of prescription opioid exposure was associated with greater changes in functional connectivity. Changes in amygdala functional connectivity were dependent on amygdala volume and white matter anisotropy of efferent and afferent pathways of the amygdala. These findings suggest that prescription opioid dependence may cause multiple anatomical-functional changes in brain.
Results Article: Upadhyay J, et al. Alterations in brain structure and functional connectivity in prescription opioid-dependent patients. Brain 2010;133(7):2098-2114. [get article]