Current Rheumatology Reports

, 13:535

Does Sleep Differ Among Patients with Common Musculoskeletal Pain Disorders?


    • Faculté de médecine dentaireUniversité de Montréal
  • Angela Nashed
    • Faculté de médecine dentaireUniversité de Montréal
  • Christiane Manzini
    • Faculté de médecine dentaireUniversité de Montréal
  • Maria Clotilde Carra
    • Faculté de médecine dentaireUniversité de Montréal
Rheumatic Manifestations of Other Diseases (Roland Staud, Section Editor)

DOI: 10.1007/s11926-011-0209-3

Cite this article as:
Lavigne, G.J., Nashed, A., Manzini, C. et al. Curr Rheumatol Rep (2011) 13: 535. doi:10.1007/s11926-011-0209-3


Most patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain report poor-quality sleep. The impact of chronic pain on sleep can be described as a vicious circle with mutual deleterious influences between pain and sleep-associated symptoms. It is difficult, however, to extract quantitative or consistent and specific sleep variables (eg, total sleep time, slow-wave sleep, sleep stage duration) that characterize the pain-related disruption of sleep. Comorbidity (eg, fatigue; depression; anxiety, sleep, movement, or breathing disorders) often confounds the reading and interpretation of sleep traces. Furthermore, many other methodologic issues complicate our ability to generalize findings (low external validity) to first-line medicine. Because sleep alterations in common musculoskeletal pain are neither specific nor pathognomonic, the aim is to provide a critical overview of the current understanding of pain and sleep interaction, discussing evidence-based and empiric knowledge that should be considered in further research and clinical applications.


FibromyalgiaChronic widespread painRheumatoid arthritisJuvenile arthritisOsteoarthritisTemporomandibular disorderSleepMusculoskeletal pain disordersNappingSlow-wave activitySleep intensityDelta activityAlpha activityInsomniaSleep disordersBreathingSleep apneaPeriodic limb movement during sleep

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011