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Sleep Med. 2001 May;2(3):243-248.

Sleepiness/alertness among healthy evening and morning type individuals.

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  • 1Sleep Disorders and Research Center, Henry Ford Hospital, 2799 W. Grand Blvd, CFP-3, MI 48202, Detroit, USA


Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the level of sleepiness/alertness among different chronotypes.Background: The Horne-Ostberg Morningness-Eveningness Questionnaire (MEQ) has allowed the characterization of chronotypes that are associated with a number of biological factors including: body temperature, cortisol rhythm, sleep patterns, and architecture.Methods: Fifty-six consecutive normal volunteers underwent an 8-h polysomnogram followed by a multiple sleep latency test (MSLT). Each subject also completed the MEQ and the Sleep/Wake Activity Inventory.Results: Evening types (ET) reported significantly later bedtimes and risetimes than both morning types (MT) and neither types (NT, P<0.05). On nocturnal polysomnography, the ET documented significantly longer latencies to stage 1 and persistent sleep when compared to both the NT and MT (P<0.01). There were no significant differences in the level of sleepiness on the MSLT across the different chronotypes. However, the pattern of sleepiness differed among them. While ET and NT showed differential sleep latencies across nap opportunities, MT showed no evidence of circadian variation on their level of sleepiness.Conclusions: There were no overall differences in daytime sleepiness/alertness across chronotypes. However, a differential pattern of sleep latencies was noted on the MSLT.

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