June J Pilcher

Clemson University, Clemson, SC, United States

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Publications (28)52.04 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Background Although shift work is necessary in many health-care settings, research suggests that it can have detrimental effects on performance in health-care providers.AimsTo determine if a change in decision-making occurred across a 12-h day shift in a sample of registered nurses.Methods The participants were nurses working a 12-h day shift (7 a.m.-7 p.m.) at a large hospital in the south-eastern USA. Participants completed a policy-capturing questionnaire, examining their likelihood of calling a physician in response to specific patient symptoms, at the beginning and end of the shift. They also completed self-report surveys on alertness, stress and sleepiness.ResultsSixty-five nurses completed the study, an overall response rate of 41%. Participants significantly changed their decision-making policies from the beginning to the end of the work shift and also became significantly less alert and more stressed. However, there was no correlation between decision-making and reported alertness and stress.Conclusions These results suggest that medical judgment in registered nurses changed from the beginning to the end of a 12-h day shift. One possible underlying mechanism responsible for the changes seen across the shift could be the ability to maintain attention, as suggested by the Controlled Attention Model. The current results expand upon previous research, indicating there are a variety of negative outcomes associated with shift work.
    Occupational Medicine 10/2012; · 1.45 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Hypertension has been linked to impaired cognitive/CNS function, and some of these changes may precede development of frank essential hypertension. The stress and fatigue of sleep deprivation may exacerbate these cognitive changes in young adults at risk. We hypothesize that individuals at risk for hypertension will show significant declines in cognitive function during a night of sleep deprivation. Fifty-one young adults were recruited for 28-hour total sleep deprivation studies. Hypertension risk was assessed by mildly elevated resting blood pressure and by family history of hypertension. A series of cognitive memory tasks was given at four test sessions across the sleep deprivation period. Although initially comparable in cognitive performance, persons at risk showed larger declines across the night for several indices of working memory, including code substitution, category, and order recall. These results suggest that cognitive/CNS changes may parallel or precede blood pressure dysregulation in the early stages of hypertension development. The role of CNS changes in the etiology of essential hypertension is discussed.
    International journal of hypertension. 01/2012; 2012:989345.
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    ABSTRACT: Teamwork is becoming increasingly common in today's workplaces; however, little research has examined how well teams perform under sleep deprivation conditions. The purpose of the current study was to examine the effect of extended work under sleep deprivation conditions on team performance. A total of 24 participants were sleep deprived for 30 h and completed 16 h of sustained operations during the last portion of the sleep deprivation period. The participants completed the Wombat, a complex task including vigilance and cognitive components, with a partner in four 24-min testing sessions during the sustained operations period. The results indicated that team performance increased during the work period while, within each testing session, team performance on vigilance tasks remained stable and overall performance decreased. The current results suggest that performance on two-person teams results in improved performance but does not fully counteract the decreases in performance within each work period. Performance in two-person teams increased across an extended work shift under sleep deprivation conditions. However, vigilance performance remained stable while overall performance decreased when examining performance in 8-min segments. These results suggest that averaging team-based performance over a longer testing period may mask the negative effects of sleep deprivation. STATEMENT OF RELEVANCE: Performance in two-person teams increased across an extended work shift under sleep deprivation conditions. However, vigilance performance remained stable while overall performance decreased when examining performance in 8-min segments. These results suggest that averaging team-based performance over a longer testing period may mask the negative effects of sleep deprivation.
    Ergonomics 07/2011; 54(7):587-96. · 1.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Shift work with sleep disruption is a systemic stressor that may possibly be associated with blood pressure dysregulation and hypertension. We hypothesize that rotation to a simulated night shift with sleep deprivation will produce blood pressure elevations in persons at risk for development of hypertension. We examined the effects of a simulated night shift on resting blood pressure in 51 diurnal young adults without current hypertension. Resting blood pressure was monitored throughout a 24-h period of total sleep deprivation with sustained cognitive work. Twelve participants (23.5%) reported one or more parents with a diagnosis of hypertension. Ten participants were classified as prehypertensive by JNC-7 criteria. Only two prehypertensive subjects reported parental hypertension. Results indicate that, as the night shift progressed, participants with a positive family history of hypertension showed significantly higher resting diastolic blood pressure than those with a negative family history of hypertension (pā€‰=ā€‰0.007). Prehypertensive participants showed elevated blood pressure throughout the study. These data suggest that rotation to a simulated night shift with sleep deprivation may contribute to blood pressure dysregulation in persons with a positive family history of hypertension.
    International Journal of Behavioral Medicine 09/2010; 17(4):314-20. · 2.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Studies have indicated that working under sleep deprivation conditions results in deficits in performance on various tasks. Few studies, however, have attempted to find a measure for predicting performance changes under sleep deprivation conditions. The current study examined whether oculomotor measures could predict changes in performance under non-sleep deprivation and acute short-term sleep deprivation conditions. Oculomotor measures and performance were examined during five testing sessions in each study. In the non-sleep deprivation study (N = 23) the testing sessions took place during 2 consecutive days. The sleep deprivation study (N = 26) took place in an 18-h sustained operations period during the night of sleep deprivation. Under non-sleep deprivation conditions, pupil diameter significantly predicted performance on grammatical reasoning (B = 0.360) and constriction latency significantly predicted performance on combined tasks (B = 0.182). Under sleep deprivation conditions, diameter, constriction latency, and saccadic velocity significantly predicted performance on a psychomotor vigilance task (B = -21.002, B = -23.126, B = -18.028, respectively). Overall, oculomotor measures better predicted performance changes under sleep deprivation conditions and better predicted performance decrements on vigilance-based tasks than cognitive tasks under acute sleep deprivation conditions. The current research suggests saccadic velocity and pupil diameter may be the most useful predictors of performance under sleep deprivation conditions, perhaps because these measures are largely controlled by involuntary neural components that slow during sleep deprivation. These data support research suggesting that saccadic velocity and pupil diameter detect excessive sleepiness and predict performance decrements under sleep deprivation conditions using additional oculomotor measures and a non-sleep deprivation comparison group.
    Aviation Space and Environmental Medicine 09/2010; 81(9):833-42. · 0.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In today's society, numerous situations arise in which sleep deprivation is a common occurrence. Subjective perceptions are a vital component to understanding the effects of sustained performance during sleep deprivation, as they may be the first indication of the effects of sustained performance or sleep deprivation on the individual. Using the theoretical framework of the Controlled Attention Model, this study examined the effects of 16 h of sustained performance under 28 h of acute sleep deprivation on perceived effort, motivation, and stress of 24 participants while completing a complex cognitive and a simple vigilance task. Perceived effort increased for both tasks, with higher effort reported on the cognitive than the vigilance task at the beginning of the experimental period, but with higher effort reported on the vigilance than the cognitive task at the end. Subjective motivation decreased for both tasks, with significantly higher levels of motivation on the cognitive than the vigilance task. Perceived stress did not change for either task. Results suggest that functioning under sustained performance and sleep-deprivation conditions affects subjective perceptions differently for cognitive versus vigilance tasks. The controlled attention model offers one means of understanding how different tasks could affect a person's subjective perceptions and ability to perform, in that different levels of controlled attention are required for the two tasks.
    Chronobiology International 01/2010; 27(2):318-33. · 4.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To improve the healthcare environment where nurses work and patients receive care, it is necessary to understand the elements that define the healthcare environment. Primary elements include (a) the occupants of the room and what knowledge, skills, and abilities they bring to the situation; (b) what tasks the occupants will be doing in the room; and (c) the characteristics of the built environment. To better understand these components, a task analysis from human factor research was conducted to study nurses as they cared for hospitalized patients. Multiple methods, including a review of nursing textbooks, observations, and interviews, were used to describe nurses' capabilities, nursing activities, and the environmental problems with current patient room models. Findings from this initial study are being used to inform the design and evaluation of an inpatient room prototype and to generate future research in improving clinical environments to support nursing productivity.
    The Journal of nursing administration 12/2009; 39(12):537-47. · 1.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Task performance while sleep deprived may be moderated by the controlled attention required by the task (Pilcher, Band, Odle-Dusseau, & Muth, 2007). This study examined the effects of 28 h of sleep deprivation on respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) during tasks with low and high controlled attention demands. The results showed that RSA increased throughout the night for both task types, but was consistently reduced during the low compared to high controlled attention tasks. The increase in RSA was linear for the high controlled attention tasks but curvilinear for the low ones. Hence, RSA followed a circadian pattern during the low controlled attention tasks but not the high ones. These results suggest that the effects of sleep deprivation on task performance may be moderated by parasympathetic activity and task type, and this has implications for task assignment during sustained operations that cause sleep deprivation.
    Psychophysiology 10/2008; 46(1):217-24. · 3.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although substantial research has been completed on the effects of sleep deprivation on performance, very little research has focused on language-based tasks. The purpose of the current study was two-fold: 1) to determine the extent to which short-term sleep deprivation affects language performance; and 2) to examine whether relatively short and easy-to-administer "probe" tasks could signal decrements in language performance under sleep deprivation conditions. There were 38 non-native English-speaking students who were paid to complete a 28-h sleep deprivation study. The participants completed several potential cognitive and vigilance probe tasks and a variety of language-based tasks. Each task was administered four times, once in each testing session during the night (18:30-22:30, 23:00-03:00, 03: 30-07:30, and 08:00-12:00). All tasks were counterbalanced across the testing sessions. Repeated-measures ANOVAs indicated that language tasks that required sustained attention and higher level processing (e.g., reading comprehension) were negatively affected by sleep deprivation, whereas other tasks that relied primarily on more basic language processing (e.g., antonym identification) were not affected. Hierarchical linear modeling analyses assessed how well the probe tasks predicted language performance. These results indicated that performance accuracy and/or speed on many of the probe tasks predicted decrements in language performance. These findings suggest that sustained work conditions and sleep deprivation negatively affect some types of language performance. Moreover, the use of probe tasks indicates that easy-to-administer tasks may be useful to identify when detriments are likely to occur in language-based performance under sleep deprivation conditions.
    Aviation Space and Environmental Medicine 06/2007; 78(5 Suppl):B25-38. · 0.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although a number of studies have examined the effects of sleep deprivation on performance, the results are not easily explained. The purpose of the current study was to examine the effects of sustained operations and acute sleep deprivation on tasks that require a wide range of information processing. The current study also provided preliminary data on the use of the controlled attention model to better understand the effects of sleep deprivation. There were 24 college students who were paid to remain awake for one night and complete a variety of cognitive and vigilance tasks. Each task was administered four times during the night, once in each testing session (17:30-21:30, 21:45-01:45, 02:30-06:30, and 06:45-10:45). All tasks were counterbalanced across the testing sessions. The data were converted to z-scores and repeated-measures ANOVAs were completed. Performance did not significantly decrease on the more complex cognitive tasks over the night of sleep deprivation. Performance on the vigilance tasks decreased significantly across the night. Examining the characteristics of the cognitive tasks indicated that although they required different types of processing, they encouraged the participants to remain attentive to and engaged in the task. In contrast, the vigilance tasks were less intrinsically interesting and engaging. Thus, it seems likely that the participants were less capable of maintaining attention on the vigilance tasks than the cognitive tasks. These results indicate that a controlled attention model may be useful in better understanding the effects of sustained operations and sleep deprivation on performance.
    Aviation Space and Environmental Medicine 06/2007; 78(5 Suppl):B15-24. · 0.78 Impact Factor
  • Laura E McClelland, June J Pilcher
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    ABSTRACT: Investigators in previous research have indicated that subjective measures of sleepiness may separate into state- and behavior-based dimensions; however, researchers have not examined this under sleep deprivation conditions. The authors' purpose in this study was to examine several measures of subjective sleepiness under sleep deprivation conditions following completion of various tasks. Fourteen students participated in a 28-hour sleep deprivation study and completed vigilance and cognitive tasks 4 times during the night. The authors administered subjective measures of sleepiness after each task. Factor analyses indicated that when individuals were not excessively sleepy, subjective sleepiness measures separated into 2 dimensions: state and behavioral sleepiness. However, when individuals were more fatigued, there was no distinction between the state and behavior dimensions of sleepiness. The current results suggest that using measures that assess state and behavioral sleepiness separately could be useful in clinical and research settings when extreme levels of sleepiness are not expected.
    Behavioral Medicine 02/2007; 33(1):17-26. · 1.03 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Few studies have examined napping in irregular work schedules such as those experienced by freight locomotive engineers. The current study examined the effect of napping in irregular work schedules on sleep length and three subjective measures: ability to go to sleep, ability to stay asleep, and a feeling of being well-rested upon awakening. One hundred and seventy-nine freight engineers completed a 14-d activity log, providing information on sleep times and subjective evaluations of sleep. The results indicated that days with naps resulted in significantly more total sleep but less sleep in the main sleep period of the day. The days with naps also resulted in somewhat more difficulty with going to sleep, staying asleep and with feeling well-rested upon awakening. It is important to note, however, that when examining the days with naps, nap length was not significantly correlated with main sleep time, ability to go to sleep, ability to stay asleep, or feeling well-rested upon awakening. These results suggest that napping may be useful when working irregular work schedules if the engineer is willing to accept a slight decrease in ability to go to sleep, stay asleep, and feeling rested.
    Industrial Health 02/2005; 43(1):123-8. · 0.87 Impact Factor
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    David P Schmitt, June J Pilcher
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    ABSTRACT: Evolutionary psychologists argue that human nature contains many discrete psychological adaptations. Each adaptation is theorized to have been functional in humans' ancestral past, and empirical evidence that an attribute is an adaptation can come from showing it possesses complexity, efficiency, universality, and other features of special design. In this article, we present a tutorial review of the evidentiary forms that evolutionary psychologists commonly use to document the existence of human adaptations. We also present a heuristic framework for integrating and evaluating cross-disciplinary evidence of adaptation. Pregnancy sickness, incest avoidance, men's desires for multiple sex partners, and an easily learned fear of snakes are evaluated as possible human adaptations using this framework. We conclude that future research and teaching in evolutionary psychology would benefit from more fully utilizing cross-disciplinary frameworks to evaluate evidence of human adaptation.
    Psychological Science 11/2004; 15(10):643-9. · 4.43 Impact Factor
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    Transportation Research Record. 01/2004; 1865(1).
  • June J Pilcher, Cynthia L S Pury, Eric R Muth
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    ABSTRACT: The authors' purpose in the current study was to apply P. J. Lang's (1968, 1971, 1985) theory of multiple systems of emotional response to the study of subjective sleepiness. A total of 274 participants completed the Stanford Sleepiness Scale (SSS), the Profile of Mood States (POMS), three sleepiness-related Visual Analogue Scales (VAS), and the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS). The authors completed correlations and factor analysis of the 4 sleepiness measures. The SSS, POMS, and VAS measures were better correlated with each other than with the ESS. Similarly, the SSS, POMS, and VAS measures loaded highly onto one factor, whereas the ESS loaded highly onto a separate factor. These results indicated that the ESS measured a different aspect of subjective sleepiness than the SSS, POMS, or VAS. According to Lang's emotional responses theory, the ESS assessed a behavioral component of sleepiness, and the SSS, POMS, and VAS measures assessed an internal state related to sleepiness.
    Behavioral Medicine 02/2003; 29(2):60-7. · 1.03 Impact Factor
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    June J Pilcher, Eric Nadler, Caroline Busch
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    ABSTRACT: A meta-analysis to mathematically summarize the effect of hot and cold temperature exposure on performance was completed. The results from 515 effect sizes calculated from 22 original studies suggest that hot and cold temperatures negatively impact performance on a wide range of cognitive-related tasks. More specifically, hot temperatures of 90 degrees F (32.22 degrees C) Web Bulb Globe Temperature Index or above and cold temperatures of 50 degrees F (10 degrees C) or less resulted in the greatest decrement in performance in comparison to neutral temperature conditions (14.88% decrement and 13.91% decrement, respectively). Furthermore, the duration of exposure to the experimental temperature, the duration of exposure to the experimental temperature prior to the task onset, the type of task and the duration of the task had differential effects on performance. The current results indicate that hot and cold temperature exposure have a negative impact on performance and that other variables (e.g., length of exposure to the temperature or task duration) may modify this relationship.
    Ergonomics 09/2002; 45(10):682-98. · 1.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Many healthy adults report daytime napping. Surprisingly few studies, however, have examined spontaneous napping behavior, especially very short naps, in healthy adults. The authors examined the prevalence of power naps (lasting less than 20 minutes) and longer naps (20 minutes or more) and their effects on nighttime sleep in a group of healthy young and middle-aged adults. The young and middle-aged adults reported very similar sleep and napping patterns, with approximately 74% of the participants in both groups reporting they had napped during a 7-day sleep-log period. Almost half of the participants reported that the average nap lasted less than 20 minutes. A multivariant analysis of variance (MANOVA) found no significant differences between the no-nap and the power-nap or long-nap groups in sleep quantity or quality for either age group. The current data suggested that power napping occurs frequently in healthy adults and that spontaneous napping does not negatively affect nighttime sleep.
    Behavioral Medicine 02/2001; 27(2):71-6. · 1.03 Impact Factor
  • J J Pilcher, M K Coplen
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    ABSTRACT: The current study examined the frequency with which shorter than 24-h work/rest cycles occur in locomotive engineer work schedules, and what effects these work/rest cycles had on sleep quantity and sleep quality. The results indicated that shorter than 24-h work/rest cycles occurred in 33.6% of the work days reported by 198 locomotive engineers. In addition, the shorter than 24-h work/rest cycles occurred more frequently in work schedules that created an on-call work system, such as road pool turn and extra board assignments, than in work schedules that used more predictable or regular work times, such as regular road assignments and yard/local work. As would be expected, when engineers worked shorter than 24-h work/rest cycles, they reported less sleep and poorer sleep than under the longer than 24-h work/rest cycles. Similarly, on-call work assignments resulted in less sleep and poorer sleep than regular work assignments. These results indicate that specific aspects of the work schedules used in railroad operations, particularly on-call operations that result in shorter than 24-h work/rest cycles, can lead to increased sleep-related problems. Although the North American railroad industry is making significant changes in on-call operations to minimize sleep-related problems from on-call schedules, better fatigue-related models validated within the railroad industry are needed.
    Ergonomics 06/2000; 43(5):573-88. · 1.67 Impact Factor
  • J J Pilcher, B J Lambert, A I Huffcutt
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    ABSTRACT: The current study used the meta-analytic technique to quantitatively assess the effects of permanent and rotating shift-work schedules on sleep length. A meta-analysis was completed on 36 primary studies resulting in 165 effect sizes. Effect sizes comparing shift-workers to a permanent day shift control group were calculated for permanent evening shifts, permanent night shifts, and morning, evening, and night shifts worked as part of slowly and rapidly rotating shift systems. NA PATIENTS OR PARTICIPANTS: NA INTERVENTIONS: NA RESULTS: Permanent night shifts resulted in a decrease, whereas permanent evening shifts resulted in an increase in sleep length. The shifts within rotating schedules followed the same pattern, with the addition of morning shifts having a moderate detrimental effect on sleep length. Furthermore, the speed of shift rotation had an impact. Slowly rotating shifts, in general, had the least detrimental effect on sleep length of the permanent and rotating shift-work schedules studied here. The pattern of effects among morning, evening, and night shifts was the same for rapidly and slowly rotating shifts, with night shifts having the greatest detrimental effect, morning shifts having a moderate detrimental effect and evening shifts having a positive effect on sleep length. In addition, nights on rotating shifts had a greater negative effect on sleep length than permanent night shifts. Slowly rotating shifts have the least negative impact on sleep length of shift-work schedules including a night shift. However, permanent night shifts could be an alternative shift-work schedule in operational settings that require many workers at night.
    Sleep 04/2000; 23(2):155-63. · 5.10 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although sleepiness is pervasive in our society, there is little agreement on how to measure sleepiness or on how well sleepiness is actually related to sleep habits. To better assess how subjective sleepiness is related to sleep, the authors used self-report measures of sleep quantity, sleep quality, and napping to predict 4 different sleepiness-related measures in a group of healthy young and middle-aged-to-older adults. A forward regression analysis indicated that sleep quality was better than sleep quantity as a predictor of participants' sleepiness. The sleep measures, furthermore, predicted sleepiness better in the older adults than in the younger adults. Finally, the 4 sleepiness measures differed in how well they were related to sleep. The findings in the study suggest that sleepiness is a complex phenomenon rather than a simple reflection of sleep quantity.
    Behavioral Medicine 02/2000; 25(4):161-8. · 1.03 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

996 Citations
52.04 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2002–2012
    • Clemson University
      • • Department of Psychology
      • • School of Architecture
      Clemson, SC, United States
  • 2010
    • Gettysburg College
      • Department of Management
      Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, United States
  • 1996–2004
    • Bradley University
      • Department of Psychology
      Peoria, IL, United States
  • 1997
    • Walter Reed Army Institute of Research
      Silver Spring, Maryland, United States