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Measuring sleep regularity: Theoretical properties and practical usage of existing metrics

Fischer, D. and Klerman, E.B. and Phillips, A.J.K. (2021) Measuring sleep regularity: Theoretical properties and practical usage of existing metrics. Sleep, 44 (10), zsab103. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine. doi: 10.1093/sleep/zsab103. ISSN 0161-8105.

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1093/sleep/zsab103


Study Objectives: Sleep regularity predicts many health-related outcomes. Currently, however, there is no systematic approach to measuring sleep regularity. Traditionally, metrics have assessed deviations in sleep patterns from an individual’s average. Traditional metrics include intra-individual standard deviation (StDev), Interdaily Stability (IS), and Social Jet Lag (SJL). Two metrics were recently proposed that instead measure variability between consecutive days: Composite Phase Deviation (CPD) and Sleep Regularity Index (SRI). Using large-scale simulations, we investigated the theoretical properties of these five metrics. Methods: Multiple sleep-wake patterns were systematically simulated, including variability in daily sleep timing and/or duration. Average estimates and 95% confidence intervals were calculated for six scenarios that affect measurement of sleep regularity: ‘scrambling’ the order of days; daily vs. weekly variation; naps; awakenings; ‘all-nighters’; and length of study. Results: SJL measured weekly but not daily changes. Scrambling did not affect StDev or IS, but did affect CPD and SRI; these metrics, therefore, measure sleep regularity on multi-day and day-to-day timescales, respectively. StDev and CPD did not capture sleep fragmentation. IS and SRI behaved similarly in response to naps and awakenings but differed markedly for all-nighters. StDev and IS required over a week of sleep-wake data for unbiased estimates, whereas CPD and SRI required larger sample sizes to detect group differences. Conclusions: Deciding which sleep regularity metric is most appropriate for a given study depends on a combination of the type of data gathered, the study length and sample size, and which aspects of sleep regularity are most pertinent to the research question.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/142301/
Document Type:Article
Title:Measuring sleep regularity: Theoretical properties and practical usage of existing metrics
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Fischer, D.dorothee.fischer (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Date:17 April 2021
Journal or Publication Title:Sleep
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
DOI :10.1093/sleep/zsab103
Page Range:zsab103
Publisher:The American Academy of Sleep Medicine
Keywords:Intra-individual variability, Inter-individual variability, Sleep variability, Sleep stability, Circadian misalignment, Circadian disruption
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Aeronautics
HGF - Program Themes:Air Transportation and Impact
DLR - Research area:Aeronautics
DLR - Program:L AI - Air Transportation and Impact
DLR - Research theme (Project):L - Human Factors
Location: Köln-Porz
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Aerospace Medicine > Sleep and Human Factors Research
Deposited By: Sender, Alina
Deposited On:25 May 2021 12:09
Last Modified:09 Feb 2022 13:49

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