A study in the Feb. 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine found that poor sleep quality correlated with higher levels of depressive symptoms, greater pain severity, increased fatigue, and greater functional disability in patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). The study suggests that addressing sleep problems via pharmacological or behavioral interventions may have a critical impact on the health and lives of patients with RA.
The study represents a cross-sectional examination of the relationship between sleep quality and functional disability in 162 patients with RA. The sample had an average age of 58.5 years, and 76 percent were female. All patients had been diagnosed with RA for at least two years; on average, patients had RA for 14 years.
Participants completed the following questionnaires: Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), Beck Depression Inventory-II, Medical Outcomes Study Short Form - 36, and the Health Assessment Questionnaire. The results provided input on their sleep quality, depression, fatigue, and functional disability and pain severity, respectively. Patients also provided sociodemographic information and their medical history.
Results show that sleep quality has an indirect effect on functional disability after controlling for age, gender and number of comorbities. According to the PSQI results, 61 percent of patients were poor sleepers and 33 percent reported having pain that disturbed their sleep three or more times per week.
"The primary finding of our study is that poor sleep quality is associated with greater functional disability among patients with RA and this relationship may be explained by pain severity and fatigue," said lead author Dr. Faith S. Luyster, research assistant professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing in Pittsburgh, Pa. "These results highlight the importance of addressing sleep complaints among patients with RA. By treating sleep problems either pharmacologically or behaviorally, symptoms and activity limitations associated with RA may be reduced."
The study's finding that poorer sleep quality is associated with greater pain severity is consistent with recent evidence suggesting that sleep disruption may lower pain threshold and enhance pain in RA and otherwise healthy adults.
According to the National Institute of Health, RA is an inflammatory disease affecting about 1.3 million U.S. adults, and causes pain, swelling, stiffness, and loss of function in the joints. Disturbed sleep has been found to be a major concern among persons with RA.
Physical disability resulting from polyarticular joint disease in patients with RA may limit their ability to carry out daily activities such as dressing, walking, grooming, and writing - tasks that can be further restricted by fatigue, pain severity, and depression.
It is possible that functional disability may affect depression, pain severity and fatigue, which in turn may affect sleep quality. It is likely that the relationships are bidirectional to some extent.
"Not sleeping well at night can contribute to greater pain sensitivity and fatigue during the day which in turn can limit a patient's ability to engage in activities of daily living and discretionary activities," Luyster said.
Luyster noted that treating sleep disturbances in RA patients might have beneficial effects beyond improving sleep.
The study was supported by grants from the National Institute of Health.
The peer-reviewed Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine is published bimonthly and is the official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, a professional membership society that is the leader in setting standards and promoting excellence in sleep medicine health care, education and research.
For a copy of the study, "Sleep Quality and Functional Disability in Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis," or to arrange an interview with an AASM spokesperson, please contact Public Relations Coordinator Emilee McStay at 630-737-9700, ext. 9345, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Emilee McStay | EurekAlert!
The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft
Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
22.09.2017 | Life Sciences
22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering
22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy