Send to

Choose Destination
J Pers Disord. 2013 Oct;27(5):680-96. doi: 10.1521/pedi_2012_26_057. Epub 2012 Aug 28.

Circadian sleep-wake cycles, well-being, and light therapy in borderline personality disorder.


Individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD) frequently suffer from sleep disturbances. The authors investigated circadian rhythms, sleep, and well-being in women with BPD in their habitual life conditions during 3 weeks with morning light therapy (LT) and 3 weeks without LT (oLT). Sleep-wake cycles were measured using wrist actimetry, proximal skin temperature as an indirect index of relaxation, as well as weekly salivary melatonin to document the internal circadian rhythm phase. Questionnaires assessed clinical state throughout the 6-week protocol. Ten matched healthy women followed the same 6-week protocol without light treatment. Women with BPD had significantly worse subjective sleep quality and reduced daytime alertness compared to controls. Sleep-wake cycles in BPD ranged from highly disturbed to extremely regular patterns. Melatonin and proximal skin temperature profiles revealed appropriate synchronization of the circadian system with the sleep-wake cycle in most BPD women and in all controls. Morning LT significantly phase-advanced activity in BPD compared to oLT, shortened sleep duration, decreased movement time, and increased skin temperature during sleep (a marker of relaxation). Although general depression scores and borderline symptoms did not change, daytime alertness improved with morning LT, and atypical depression scores were attenuated. Morning LT is a potential adjunct treatment for BPD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center