Investigating Sleep Disturbance and Bipolar Disorder

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

According to Joanna Lyford, Senior medwireNews Reporter, a recent study by Pierre Geoffroy of Hôpital Albert Chenevier and co-workers has shed light on the role of sleep disturbance and bipolar disorder.

Lyford writes: ‘both objective and subjective features of sleep differ between people with bipolar disorder who are currently euthymic and healthy controls, a case–control study has found’. She continues: ‘The findings add further weight to the hypothesis that sleep and circadian rhythms are disrupted in bipolar disorder and are a potential therapeutic target in strategies to prevent relapse’.

Interestingly, the study, published in the Journal of Affective Disorders concluded that compared with healthy controls, bipolar disorder patients had a significantly longer sleep duration, longer sleep latency (the length of time that it takes to accomplish the transition from full wakefulness to sleep), poorer sleep efficiency, as well as other key differences. Consequently, targeting sleep disturbance as a diagnostic tool for further study, and an avenue for therapeutic intervention, may help refine the clinical approach to this complicated disease.

For many of us who live with bipolar disorder, the results of this study will come as no surprise.  You can read the medwireNews summary of this article here.

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