PURPOSE OF THE STUDY.
To investigate the effects of missed sleep on quality of life and asthma morbidity.
Parents of 147 asthmatic children ages 6 to 13 years from urban neighborhoods near Providence, Rhode Island, participated. Other inclusion criteria included a diagnosis of asthma from a physician, problems breathing in the last year, and current asthma medication use.
Caregivers completed the Asthma Functional Severity Scale questionnaire to assess missed sleep. Limitation of activity and/or sports, along with school absence and emergency department visits over the previous year were also investigated as indicators of asthma morbidity on the Asthma Functional Severity Scale. The Pediatric Asthma Quality of Life (QoL) Questionnaire was also completed by the caregiver to assess the QoL of the caregivers. Another measure of emotions, the Behavioral Assessment System for Children, second edition, was also completed to assess anxiety. Further information regarding ethnicity was obtained.
Higher poverty levels had higher limitation of activity, more missed sleep, and lower QoL among caregivers. Overall, higher amount of missed sleep was significantly associated with school absence, more frequent emergency department use, sports and activity limitation, as well as lower QoL among caregivers. Latino children with more frequent reports of missed sleep did have significantly more limitation of activity and lower QoL among caregivers. Missed sleep and activity limitation were more strongly associated in children with high anxiety.
Missed sleep in children from urban neighborhoods, especially among Latino children, may be important in contributing to asthma morbidity in these patients. The authors suggest assessment of sleep may aid in the identification of children with increased asthma morbidity. The recommendation is for further studies to look at the effects of frequent sleep disruption due to asthma in children.
This study brings several important topics that should be addressed during our visits with families with asthmatic children. The importance of sleep and the negative impact of missed sleep are highlighted. The study also reminds us that anxiety may be an exacerbating factor in our asthmatic patients. In the same way that behavioral assessments are part of the routine pediatric care of children, they may improve the overall care of our asthmatic patients.
- Copyright © 2013 by the American Academy of Pediatrics