Sleep instability and cognitive status in drug-resistant epilepsies

Alessandra Marques Pereira, Oliviero Bruni, Raffaele Ferri, Magda Lahorgue Nunes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: The aims of this study were to evaluate the sleep habits of children with drug resistant epilepsy and to correlate sleep abnormalities with epilepsy and level of intelligence. Subjects and methods: Twenty five subjects with drug resistant epilepsy (14 males, age range 2-16.4. years) were recruited for this study. A control group was formed by 23 normal children. Two instruments to assess sleep habits were administered to the patients with epilepsy: a questionnaire on sleep habits (to preschool children) and a questionnaire on sleep behavior (for children aged more than seven years old); a cognitive test (Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-WISC) was also performed. Patients underwent a complete polysomnographic study and sleep parameters, including CAP, were analyzed and correlated according to cognitive-behavioral measures in children with epilepsy. Results: Children with drug-resistant epilepsy and severe mental retardation showed sleep abnormalities such as low sleep efficiency, high percentage of wakefulness after sleep onset, reduced slow wave sleep, and reduced REM sleep. Sleep microstructure evaluated by means of CAP analysis showed a decrease in A1 index during N3 in patients with more severe cognitive impairment. Children with epilepsy and cognitive impairment (n=10) had higher Sleep Behavior Questionnaire for Children (SBQC) total scores (65.60 ± 18.56) compared to children with epilepsy and normal IQ (50.00 ± 10.40), p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)536-541
Number of pages6
JournalSleep Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2012


  • Behavior
  • Cyclic alternating pattern
  • Epilepsy
  • Mental retardation
  • Sleep
  • Sleep habits

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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