The effect of opioids on sleep architecture.

Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego, USA.
Journal of clinical sleep medicine: JCSM: official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (Impact Factor: 2.83). 02/2007; 3(1):33-6.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The effect of opioid medications on sleep architecture has been demonstrated in patients with comorbid pain or opioid addiction. This study examined whether commonly used opioid medications have an adverse effect on sleep architecture in healthy adults.
Forty-two healthy subjects were examined with polysomnography after a bedtime dose of placebo, sustained-release morphine sulfate (15 mg), or methadone (5 mg) on each of 3 different nights in a double-blind multiple crossover study in a sleep laboratory in the General Clinical Research Center at an academic medical center.
Both opioid drugs significantly reduced deep sleep and increased stage 2 sleep (both p < .01); neither had an effect on sleep efficiency, wake after sleep onset, or total sleep time.
Single doses of oral opioid medications can significantly affect sleep architecture in healthy adults, and observed reductions in slow-wave sleep following opioid administration may have important implications for the pathogenesis of opioid-use related fatigue.

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