Annals of Hematology

, Volume 93, Issue 12, pp 2067–2075 | Cite as

Sleep problems and psychological distress in family members of patients with hematological malignancies in the Japanese population

  • Hitsohi TanimukaiEmail author
  • Kei Hirai
  • Hiroyoshi Adachi
  • Akane Kishi
Original Article


Patients with cancer frequently suffer from insomnia symptoms, and additionally, their family members also often experience these symptoms. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of insomnia symptoms in both family members and patients with hematological malignancies. We conducted an observational cross-sectional study using a clinical self-reported questionnaire for sleep conditions, depressive symptoms (two-question method), and worries (five items that originated from the Brief Cancer Worry Inventory). One hundred twelve family members and 153 patients were investigated. A t test and Chi-square test were used to compare the prevalence of insomnia and depressive symptoms between family members and patients. Logistic regression was used to determine whether insomnia symptoms or worries related to patients’ disease had an impact on depressive symptoms. The presence of insomnia symptoms in family members (87 %) was significantly higher than that in patients (60 %, p < 0.001). The prevalence of depressive mood and anhedonia in family members were 55 and 34 %, respectively, and these values were higher than those in patients (43 and 28 %, respectively). Insomnia symptoms and worries about present/prospective disease conditions were significantly associated with depressive mood (insomnia symptoms, odds ratios (OR) 4.3, confidence intervals (CI) 1.2–15.2, p = 0.025; worries, OR 4.4, CI 1.0–19.3, p = 0.048). Taken together, our results demonstrated that insomnia symptoms and depressive symptoms are highly prevalent in family members as well as in patients with hematological malignancies.


Hematological malignancy Family member Insomnia Depressive symptom Worry 



We would like to thank to Ms. Akiko Hashimoto and the Japanese patient advocacy group of hematological malignancies “Tsubasa” for supporting our questionnaire research.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hitsohi Tanimukai
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
    Email author
  • Kei Hirai
    • 3
  • Hiroyoshi Adachi
    • 4
  • Akane Kishi
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryOsaka University Graduate School of MedicineSuitaJapan
  2. 2.Oncology CenterOsaka University HospitalOsakaJapan
  3. 3.Center of the Study for Communication Design & Support Office for Large-scale Education and Research ProjectsOsaka UniversityOsakaJapan
  4. 4.Department of PsychiatryOsaka University Health Care CenterOsakaJapan
  5. 5.Kansai University Graduate School of PsychologyOsakaJapan

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