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Insomnia is associated to depressive symptoms in patients with chronic heart failure

DOI: 10.4236/ojn.2013.31005, PP. 33-41

Keywords: Congestive Heart Failure, Insomnia Disorders, Depressive Symptoms

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Introduction: Insomnia and depressive symptoms are common among patients with chronic heart failure (HF). Aim: The aim was to describe the prevalence of insomnia and depressive symptoms, as well as to examine the association between insomnia and depressive symptoms in patients with HF. Method: A crosssectional descriptive study including 212 patients with HF. All patients responded to questionnaires regarding sleeping difficulties (Uppsala Sleep Inventory-Chronic Heart Failure), daytime sleepiness (Epworth Sleepiness Scale) and depressive symptoms (The Mental Health Scale). Results: Patients with depressive symptoms (34%) had, compared to those without, significantly more major complaints of insomnia as indicated by the sub-types; non-restorative sleep (66% vs. 32%, p < 0.0001), difficulty in maintaining sleep (35% vs. 16%, p = 0.003), difficulty in initiating sleep (29% vs. 14%, p = 0.009) and early morning awakenings (25% vs. 10%, p = 0.004). The odds ratio (OR) to suffer from depressive symptoms; were for; non-restorative sleep 5.2 (CI 95%, 2.2 - 12.3), difficulties maintaining sleep 2.5 (CI 95%, 1.2 - 4.9), difficulties in initiating sleep 2.2 (CI 95%, 1.1 - 4.4) and early morning awakenings 2.4 (CI 95%, 1.1 - 5.4). When categorising insomnia into three severity groups, 1) non insomnia, 2) mild insomnia, and 3) severe insomnia, the OR for depressive symptoms for the mild insomnia and severe insomnia group were 2.2 (CI 95%, 1.1 - 4.2) and 7.4 (CI 95%, 2.4 - 22.8) respectively, compared to the non insomnia group. Conclusion: Insomnia is independently associated to depressive symptoms. Assessment of depressive symptoms and insomnia in patients with HF is important since treatment could be targeted to depressive symptoms only and/or to the sleep disturbance.


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