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Prog Transplant. 2011 Jun;21(2):131-6.

Sleep and daytime sleepiness of patients with left ventricular assist devices: a longitudinal pilot study.

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Wayne State University, 5557 Cass Avenue, Cohn 352, Detroit, MI 48202, USA.



No empirical longitudinal data on sleep and daytime sleepiness patterns in patients with an implantable left ventricular assist device (LVAD) exist.


(1) To describe the sleep patterns (sleep onset latency, sleep efficiency, sleep fragmentation index, total sleep time, and wake after sleep onset), sleep quality, and daytime sleepiness variables and (2) to determine the change in the pattern of these variables before and up to 6 months after LVAD implantation.


A longitudinal descriptive repeated-measures design was used. Patients wore wrist actigraphs (AW64 Actiwatch), which objectively measured sleep, for 3 consecutive days and nights before LVAD implant and at the first and second week and first, third, and sixth month after implantation. During these periods, patients also completed questionnaires on sleep quality and daytime sleepiness. Patients-Twelve of 15 patients completed the 6-month data. Data were analyzed by using descriptive statistics and repeated-measures analysis of variance.


We found long sleep onset latencies and low sleep efficiency across time periods. High sleep fragmentation index was noted at baseline and 1 week after LVAD. Short total sleep times, long wake-after-sleep-onset durations, and poor sleep quality were evident at baseline and persisted up to 6 months after LVAD implantation. Low alertness level, a manifestation of sleepiness, was common during late morning to early evening hours. However, only sleep efficiency and wake after sleep onset showed significant changes in pattern (P < .05).


Sleep disturbance and daytime sleepiness may be prevalent before and up to 6 months after LVAD implantation, warranting further investigation.

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