Sleep assessment in a randomized trial of hyperbaric oxygen in U.S. service members with post concussive mild traumatic brain injury compared to normal controls.

Publication Type
Journal Article
Year of Publication
Walker, James M; Mulatya, Caroline; Hebert, Donald; Wilson, Steffanie H; Lindblad, Anne S; Weaver, Lindell K
Sleep Med
Date Published
2018 11
Adult; Brain Injuries, Traumatic; Cataplexy; Cohort Studies; Female; Humans; Hyperbaric Oxygenation; Longitudinal Studies; Male; Military Personnel; Post-Concussion Syndrome; Restless Legs Syndrome; Self Report; Sleep Apnea, Obstructive; Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders; Sleep Wake Disorders; Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic

STUDY OBJECTIVE: In this exploratory, double-blind, longitudinal sham-controlled trial of hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) for military personnel with post concussive mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), self-reports and objective measures of sleep-wake disturbances were assessed and compared to normals.

METHODS: Self-reports consisting of Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), sleep diary, screening for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) risk, restless legs syndrome (RLS), cataplexy, and objective actigraphic measures of sleep-wake were obtained on 71 military personnel with mTBI [baseline, 13 weeks and six months post-randomization (post-intervention)], of which 35 met post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) criteria, and 75 healthy volunteers (baseline). Baseline between-group and follow-up changes from baseline overall and within subgroups were evaluated. Mild TBI was defined as consisting of head injury associated loss of consciousness (<24 h), post-traumatic amnesia, and neurological deficits.

RESULTS: Sleep quality by self-reports was markedly degraded in the mTBI group at baseline compared to a normative cohort; insomnia 87.3 versus 2.8%, OSA risk 70% versus 1.3%, RLS 32.4% versus and 2.7%. (all p-values <0.001), but actigraphy measures did not differentiate between groups. HBO compared to sham treatment improved self-reports of PSQI sleep measures, reports (five out of eight at 13-weeks and two out of eight at six-months). However, other sleep-wake measures were not different.

CONCLUSIONS: Perceived sleep quality was markedly disrupted in mTBI military personnel and sleep-wake disturbances were prevalent compared to a normative cohort. HBO relative to sham improved some measures of sleep quality on the PSQI, but other measures of sleep were not significantly different.