Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Endocrinology, Insomnia, Menopause, Sleep Disorders, Weight Research / 23.03.2021 Interview with: Leilah K. Grant, PhDPostdoctoral Research Fellow in MedicineBrigham and Women’s HospitalHarvard Medical What is the background for this study? Response: The prevalence of obesity increases in women around the age of menopause which increases the risk of diseases like diabetes and heart disease. Changes in hormones, like estrogen, are thought to contribute to weight gain during menopause, but other common symptoms of menopause such as sleep interruption may also play a role. While short sleep is known to adversely affect metabolism, little is known about the metabolic consequences of the type of sleep disruption most common in menopausal women – increased nighttime awakenings (i.e., sleep interruption) caused by hot flashes, but no change in overall sleep duration. We therefore did this study to see how an experimental model menopause-related sleep interruption would affect metabolic outcomes that may contribute to weight gain. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Insomnia, Obstructive Sleep Apnea, Sleep Disorders / 29.10.2020 Interview with: Salma Batool-Anwar, MBBS, MPH Instructor, Harvard Medical School Pulmonary and Critical Care, Sleep Medicine Brigham and Women's Faulkner What is the background for this study? Response: A well functioning sleep-wake cycle is vital to our health and prevention of chronic diseases.During previous disaters sleep disturbances have been reported.When Massachusetts governor declared a state of emergency in March’20, we hypothesized that sleep duration would be adversely affected by covid-19 related lockdown and stress.The study was approved by the institutional review board and information was collected retrospectively using the electronic medical records.(more…)
Author Interviews, Eisai, Insomnia / 02.10.2020 Interview with: Margaret Moline, PhD Executive Director, Neurology Business Group, Eisai, Inc Lemborexant International Program Lead and Global Medical What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
  • SUNRISE 2 was one of two pivotal Phase 3 studies evaluated in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of DAYVIGO (lemborexant) CIV in December 2019.
  • SUNRISE 2 was a pivotal six-month placebo-controlled treatment trial with a 6-month active treatment period including adult patients age 18 or older who met DSM-5 criteria for insomnia disorder.
  • Patients were randomized to placebo (n=325), DAYVIGO 5 mg (n=323), or DAYVIGO 10 mg (n=323) once nightly for the first six months of the study (Treatment Period 1).
  • The primary efficacy endpoint was the mean change from baseline to end of treatment at six months for subjective sleep onset latency (sSOL; the estimated minutes from the time that the patient attempted to sleep until sleep onset).
  • Secondary efficacy endpoints were mean change from baseline to end of treatment at six months subjective sleep efficiency (sSE; the proportion of time spent asleep per time in bed) and subjective wake after sleep onset (sWASO; the minutes of wake from the onset of sleep until wake time). These endpoints were measured by sleep diary.
  • At Virtual SLEEP 2020, a post-hoc analysis of SUNRISE 2 was shared in an oral presentation, which looked specifically at the long-term efficacy and safety of lemborexant in elderly adults with insomnia disorder.
  • Insomnia disorder, a chronic condition with long-term consequences for health and well-being, is prevalent in older adults.
  • This analysis of the SUNRISE 2 data reflects new learnings on the sustained impact of DAYVIGO on sleep onset and sleep maintenance in an older patient population.
Author Interviews, Insomnia, Sleep Disorders / 09.07.2020 Interview with: Jakob Weitzer MSc Department of Epidemiology Center for Public Health Medical University of Vienna Vienna, What is the background for this study? Response: Chronic insomnia is a highly prevalent, often underdiagnosed and undertreated disease. Previous research has linked dispositional optimism to a better sleep quality and to insomnia symptoms, and showed that optimism can be trained. Since we think that positive psychology plays an important role for our health we wanted to further shed light on this topic.(more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, Kidney Disease / 04.11.2017 Interview with: Dr. Jun Ling (Lucy) Lu,MD, CCRP Senior Clinical Research Coordinator in the Department of MedicineCsaba P Kovesdy MD FASN Fred Hatch Professor of Medicine Director, Clinical Outcomes and Clinical Trials ProgramDivision of Nephrology, University of Tennessee Health Science Center Nephrology Section Chief, Memphis VA Medical Center Memphis TN, What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Around one third of the world’s population suffers from insomnia. Previous studies showed that sleep disorders affect the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis and the sympatho-adrenal system, which may cause abnormalities in several organ systems and pathways causing metabolic or cardiovascular abnormalities. However, there is inadequate evidence of an association between chronic insomnia and adverse renal outcomes.After examining 938,473 US veterans (4.4% of them had chronic insomnia) with baseline estimated eGFR >60 ml/min/1.73m2, we found that chronic insomnia is associated with a 43% higher risk of all-cause mortality, a 2.5-fold higher incidence of eGFR ≤45ml/min/1.73m2, a 2.3-fold higher ESRD risk, and with rapid loss of kidney function.(more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Insomnia / 31.03.2017 Interview with: Qiao He Master’s degree student China Medical University Shenyang, What is the background for this study? Response: Sleep is an important factor for biological recovery functions, but in modern society, more and more people have complained having sleep problems like insomnia, one of the main sleep disorders. It is reported that approximately one-third of the German general population has been suffering from insomnia symptoms. In decades, many researchers have found associations between insomnia and bad health outcomes. Insomnia seems to be a big health issue. However, the results from previous studies regarding the association of insomnia and cardiovascular or cerebrovascular events were inconsistent. Therefore, we conducted this study. (more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, JAMA / 02.12.2016 Interview with: Lee M. Ritterband, Ph.D. Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences Director, Center for Behavioral Health and Technology University of Virginia School of Medicine Ivy Foundational Translational Research Building Charlottesville, VA What is the background for this study? Response: Cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia, a non-pharmacological intervention, is the first line recommendation for adults with chronic insomnia (see recommendations made earlier this year from the American College of Physicians). Access to CBT-I, however, is limited by numerous barriers, including a limited supply of behavioral medicine providers. One way to help improve access to this effective treatment is to develop and evaluate additional delivery methods of CBT-I, including Internet-delivered CBT-I.This study was designed to evaluate the efficacy of an Internet-delivered CBT-I program (SHUTi: Sleep Healthy Using The Internet) over the short-term (9-weeks) and long-term (1-year).(more…)
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Insomnia, Sleep Disorders / 28.04.2016 Interview with: Haicong Li Director and Professor, Department of Geriatrics China-Japan Friendship Hospital Beijing, What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Based on our clinical observations over the years, we noticed two common phenomena:
  • One is that the occurrence of hypertension in patients with chronic sleep disorders tend to be higher than those with normal sleep conditions;
  • The other is that the blood pressure of some hypertensive patients cannot be lowered to normal level even with anti-hypertensive treatments, of which group many have sleep disorders.
So we hypothesized that the improvement of insomnia can effectively help lower the of hypertensive patients and the combination of anti-hypertensive medication and sedative-hypnotic drugs can achieve better therapeutic effects. In our experiment, a total of 402 patients with a diagnosis of insomnia and hypertension were selected and randomly divided into two groups. The treatment group (202 cases) received standard antihypertensive treatment with Estazolam and the control group (200 cases) received standard antihypertensive treatment with placebo. We measured the sedentary diastolic (SiSBP) and systolic blood pressure (SiDBP) before the treatment and every 7 days during the experiment. To assess the sleep quality and anxiety and depression levels of patients, we reported the scores of the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), the Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAMA) and the Hamilton Depression Scale-17 (HAMD 17) at the same time points.At the conclusion of the experiment, PSQI, HAMA, and HAMD17 scores were significantly lower than those of the control group (P<0.001). The insomnia treatment efficacy of Estazolam in the treatment group was 67.3%, significantly higher than that (14.0%) of the control group (P < 0.001). The blood pressure of the treatment group showed significant improvement throughout the experiment. By Day 28, the decrease of SiSBP and SiDBP in the treatment group was significantly greater than that of the control group (SiSBP: 10.5±3.9 vs. 3.4±2.5; DiSBP: 8.1±3.6 vs. 2.7±2.1, mmHg, P<0.001) and the compliance rate of goal BP (<140/90 mmHg) was 74.8% with Estazolam, compared to 50.5% with placebo (P<0.001).Thus, our findings indicated that the improvement of insomnia can significantly help lower the blood pressure in hypertensive patients.(more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, Psychological Science / 12.09.2015

Markus Jansson-Fröjmark PhD Associate professor, clinical psychologist Department of Psychology Stockholm University Interview with: Markus Jansson-Fröjmark PhD Associate professor, clinical psychologist Department of Psychology Stockholm UniversityMedical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: There is ample evidence suggesting that how people regulate their emotions might influence several types of psychopathology, including anxiety and mood disorders. The purpose of our longitudinal investigation was therefore to examine the association between emotion regulation and how insomnia develops over time. Our main finding was that people whose ability to regulate their emotions had diminished were more likely to develop insomnia and that it was more likely to be persistent. A reduced ability to regulate emotions was associated with an 11% increased risk of developing a new bout of insomnia or reporting persistent insomnia. For anyone that has to deal with insomnia on a daily basis, they may find that is can effect a large part of their lives. Sleep is important for even, as it allows us all to function properly throughout the day. When it comes to Insomnia, there is medication out there that people can take that may help them with this issue. A popular method of treatment is through the use of medical marijuana. If this is something that you have been planning on trying, you would need to obtain your medical marijuana card in Cincinnati (if you live in this city) before you could start receiving product. Hopefully this will help with your insomnia and provide you with a better quality of sleep.(more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, JAMA, Mental Health Research / 07.07.2015

Jason Ong, Ph.D., CBSM Associate Professor, Department of Behavioral Sciences Director, Behavioral Sleep Medicine Training Program Rush University Medical Interview with: Jason Ong, Ph.D., CBSM Associate Professor, Department of Behavioral Sciences Director, Behavioral Sleep Medicine Training Program Rush University Medical CenterMedical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Insomnia is a very common sleep problem that was previously thought to be related to another medical or psychiatric condition. Evidence now supports the notion that insomnia can emerge as a disorder distinct from the comorbid condition. In this study, we evaluated the effectiveness of cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I), the most widely used nonpharmacologic treatment for insomnia, in the context of medical and psychiatric comorbidities.We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of 37 studies and found that 36% of patients who received cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia were in remission at post-treatment compared to 17% who received a control or comparison condition. CBT-I had medium to large effects for improving sleep quality and reducing the amount of time awake in bed. Positive findings were also found on the comorbid condition, with greater improvements in psychiatric conditions compared to medical conditions.(more…)
Annals Internal Medicine, Author Interviews, Insomnia, Psychological Science / 10.06.2015 Interview with: Dr David Cunnington Sleep Physician & Director Melbourne Sleep Disorders Centre East Melbourne AustraliaMedical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Insomnia is a very common problem with 15-20% of adults having chronic insomnia, that is, trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep most days for 3 months or more. The most commonly used treatment is sleeping pills or hypnotics, however, they don’t address the underlying disorder, and come with potential side effects. Also, sleeping tablets just mask the symptoms, and as soon as tablets are stopped, symptoms recur. People with chronic insomnia think and behave differently around sleep, which perpetuates their symptoms. The key to improving symptoms in the long run is addressing thoughts and behaviours around sleep, which is what cognitive behaviour therapy does.Our study showed that cognitive behaviour therapy reduced the time taken to get to sleep by 20 minutes and reduced the amount of time spent awake after falling asleep by nearly 30 minutes. These effects were maintained out to 12 months after treatment. These reductions in time taken to get to sleep and time spent awake are similar to those reported in clinical trials of hypnotics. (more…)
Alcohol, Author Interviews, Insomnia / 23.12.2014

Michael Nadorff, PhD, Assistant professor Mississippi State University Starkville, Interview with: Michael Nadorff, PhD, Assistant professor Mississippi State University Starkville, Miss.Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Dr. Nadorff: A growing literature has found that insomnia symptoms are associated with suicidal behavior, and several studies suggest that this relation may be independent of several different forms of psychopathology. However, little research has examined the role sleep disorders, such as insomnia, play in explaining why known risk factors, such as alcohol use, are associated with suicidal behavior. In our study, we examined whether insomnia symptoms explained a significant portion of the relation between alcohol symptoms and suicide risk. We found that for both men and women insomnia symptoms explained a significant amount of the variance in the relation between alcohol use and suicide risk.(more…)
Accidents & Violence, Author Interviews, Insomnia / 02.11.2014

Lars Laugsand, MD, PhD, Postdoctoral fellow Department of Public Health Norwegian University of Science in Technology Trondheim, Interview with: Lars Laugsand, MD, PhD, Postdoctoral fellow Department of Public Health Norwegian University of Science in Technology Trondheim, Norway.Medical Research: What is the background for this study?Dr. Laugsand: Very few prospective studies have assessed the association of insomnia symptoms and risk for injuries.Medical Research: What are the main findings?Dr. Laugsand: We found that increasing number of insomnia symptoms was strongly associated with higher risk for both overall unintentional fatal injuries and fatal motor-vehicle injuries in a dose-dependent manner. Those who reported to suffer from all major insomnia symptoms were at considerably higher risk than those who had no symptoms or only a few symptoms. Among the different insomnia symptoms, difficulties falling asleep appeared to have the strongest and most robust association with fatal injuries. (more…)
Aging, Author Interviews, Insomnia / 13.10.2014 Interview with:Jen-Hao Chen, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, Department of Health Sciences University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211Medical Research: What are the main findings of the study?Dr. Chen: In this study, we mapped four commonly-reported insomnia symptoms (feeling rested when waking up, having trouble falling asleep, waking up during the night, waking up too early and not being able to fall asleep again) to direct assessment of sleep characteristics in the general population of U.S. older adults. While we know older adults frequently complain about their sleep, we know little about how these complain reflect older adults’ actual sleep outcomes.Using innovative actigraphy data of 727 older adults aged 62-91 from the National Social Life, Health and Aging Project, we found that two of these four common report of insomnia symptoms did not match specific objective sleep characteristics as these questions intends to index. The question of feeling rested was not related to any objective sleep characteristic. The question of difficulty falling asleep was not related to the objective measure of time to fall sleep but was related to other objective sleep characteristics. For waking up during the night question, high frequency was associated with more wake time after sleep onset and numbers of wake bout (but was also related to other objective sleep characteristics). For waking up too earlier question, answer of this question was related to earlier wake up time. But again, other objective sleep characteristics also predicted frequency of waking up earlier.In sum, many of the relationships and non-relationships found in this study were unexpected. Findings suggested that these widely used questions did not related to older adults’ sleep outcomes as exactly as the wording suggested. Thus, while older adults’ report of these questions are related to objective sleep characteristics in some ways, insomnia symptoms and objective sleep characteristics did not complete match each other as expected.(more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, Occupational Health / 04.09.2014

Tea Lallukka, PhD Finnish Institute of Occupational Health & University of Helsinki, Hjelt Institute, Department of Public Health University of Helsinki, Interview with: Tea Lallukka, PhD Finnish Institute of Occupational Health & University of Helsinki, Hjelt Institute, Department of Public Health University of Helsinki, Finland Medical Research: What are the main findings of the study?Dr. Lallukka: Our study used nationally representative survey data linked with register data on medically certified sickness absence among working -aged Finnish women and men. We showed consistent associations between insomnia symptoms, sleep duration, and being tired and sickness absence. The follow-up lasted around 7 years. Sickness absence days were derived from comprehensive registers from the Social Insurance Institution of Finland. The associations were broadly similar among women and men. Furthermore, they remained even after considering key correlates of sleep and sickness absence including socioeconomic position, working conditions, health behaviors, obesity, and mental and physical health. Health data were derived from physical examination conducted by field physicians. These data are more objective, and help provide more robust evidence. We further covered all key sleep disturbances and sleep duration for more comprehensive understanding about the contribution of sleep to sickness absence. Finally, a novel method developed by the authors (Härkänen & Kaikkonen) allowed us to estimate the difference in sickness absence days per working year among those reporting and not reporting different sleep disturbances. Using the difference in days absent from work, we were further able to estimate the hypothetical direct costs of sickness absence highlighting notable societal significance of sleep. Thus, a large part of all costs of sickness absence are attributable to poor sleep. For example, those sleeping 5 hours or less or 10 hours or more, were absent from work ca 5-9 days more, as compared to those with optimal sleep length. The optimal sleep length with the lowest risk of sickness absence was 7 hours 46 minutes for men and 7 hours 38 minutes for women. (more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, Mental Health Research / 31.07.2014 Interview with: Pasquale K Alvaro School of Psychology University of Adelaide South Australia, AustraliaMedical Research: What are the main findings of the study?Answer: In adolescents, insomnia is related to depression beyond chronotype (a classification system for circadian rhythms or body clock), anxiety and age. Insomnia is also related to Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD) beyond chronotype, depression and age. Depression accounts for the relationship between insomnia and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Separation Anxiety Disorder (SAD) and Social Phobia (SP). Furthermore, an evening chronotype (delayed sleep phase, that is, preferring to go to bed in the early morning) predicts insomnia beyond depression, anxiety and age. Moreover, an evening chronotype predicts depression beyond insomnia, anxiety and age. Finally, insomnia and depression account for the relationships between an evening chronotype and panic disorder, OCD, SAD and SP.(more…)
Author Interviews, Insomnia, Johns Hopkins, Sleep Disorders / 12.06.2013 Interview with: Christopher Kaufmann, MHS Department of Mental Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Hampton House, Room 800 624 North Broadway Baltimore, MD 21205 email: What are the main findings of the study?Mr. Kaufmann: The purpose of our study was to examine the association between insomnia and the use of a number of costly health services. We used data from the Health and Retirement Study, a large nationally representative longitudinal population-based study of US middle-aged and older adults. We found that individuals who reported a greater number of insomnia symptoms were more likely to report being hospitalized, using home healthcare services, and using nursing homes two years later. After we accounted for a number of demographic and clinical characteristics, the association between number of reported insomnia symptoms and hospitalization remained statistically significant.(more…)