Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers Describe New Cost-effective Method To Assess Sleep

Date:
August 30, 2005
Source:
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Summary:
Using information hidden in the beat-to-beat changes of the heart's electrical signals, researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) have developed an inexpensive method to assess the stability and quality of sleep, which could be used to help understand the mechanisms of sleep control and diagnose sleep disorders, as well as to test the efficacy of sleep aids and other medications.

BOSTON -- Using information hidden in the beat-to-beat changes of theheart's electrical signals, researchers at Beth Israel DeaconessMedical Center (BIDMC) have developed an inexpensive method to assessthe stability and quality of sleep, which could be used to helpunderstand the mechanisms of sleep control and diagnose sleepdisorders, as well as to test the efficacy of sleep aids and othermedications.

Related Articles


Known as a "sleep spectrogram," the novel graph is based on dataobtained solely from a simple electrocardiogram (ECG). The spectrogramis described in a study in the Sept. 1 issue of the medical journal Sleep, which currently appears on-line.

"This new ECG-based approach is important because it promises toprovide an affordable and readily achievable way to monitor sleepstability in a wide range of conditions, including sleep apnea,depression, fibromyalgia, heart failure and stress," explainscardiologist Ary Goldberger, MD, Director of the Margret & H.A. ReyInstitute for Nonlinear Dynamics in Medicine and the study's seniorauthor.

The new study, led by sleep researcher Robert Thomas, MD, ofBIDMC's Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine,identified two distinct types of behavior exhibited throughout thecourse of a person's sleep, the first being stable and restful, thesecond being unstable and aroused. The results show that conventionalapproaches to categorize non-REM (non-rapid-eye-movement) sleep intogrades of depth do not capture this potentially important dimension.

"Among healthy adults, physiological behaviors will showrelatively abrupt shifts -- a occurring over minutes -- between bothstable and unstable sleep, but the stable stage clearly dominates,"explains Goldberger, who is also a Professor of Medicine at HarvardMedical School. "But," he adds, "in a variety of disease states, thespectrogram shows that an unstable sleep pattern is predominant, andamong patients with severe cases of sleep apnea, virtually all of thepatient's non-REM sleep is unstable."

The creation of the spectrogram could serve as an importantcomplement to traditional sleep staging, which shows cycles of rapideye movement (REM) and non-REM sleep and is obtained throughpolysomnography, a series of measurements that require the use anelectroencephalogram (EEG) to record patients' brain waves.

"Spectrograms can uncover information that is not provided bytraditional sleep scoring," notes Thomas. "Polysomnograms are bothexpensive and time-consuming. The spectrogram, therefore, could providea new way of looking at sleep and offer doctors an alternative to theREM/non-REM sleep scoring system.

Furthermore, we have more recent data showing that thepatterns in humans and rodents are remarkably similar, and suggestingthat what we may be observing is a fundamental and conserved sleepmechanism."

In addition to Goldberger and Thomas, study coauthors includeBIDMC engineer Joseph Mietus and C.K. Peng, PhD, of BIDMC'sCardiovascular Division.

###

This study was supported by the National Institutes of Health, theG. Harold and Leila Y. Mathers Foundation and the James S. McDonnellFoundation.

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center is a patient care,teaching and research affiliate of Harvard Medical School, and ranksthird in National Institutes of Health funding among independenthospitals nationwide. BIDMC is clinically affiliated with the JoslinDiabetes Center and is a research partner of Dana-Farber/Harvard CancerCenter.



Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. "Researchers Describe New Cost-effective Method To Assess Sleep." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 August 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050830071731.htm>.
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. (2005, August 30). Researchers Describe New Cost-effective Method To Assess Sleep. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050830071731.htm
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. "Researchers Describe New Cost-effective Method To Assess Sleep." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050830071731.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) Feast your eyes on this gorgeous family-friendly resort. Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com
What Your Favorite Color Says About You

What Your Favorite Color Says About You

Buzz60 (Oct. 22, 2014) We all have one color we love to wear, and believe it or not, your color preference may reveal some of your character traits. In celebration of National Color Day, Krystin Goodwin (@kyrstingoodwin) highlights what your favorite colors may say about you. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins