Sleep and Breathing

, Volume 23, Issue 1, pp 209–216 | Cite as

Excessive daytime sleepiness in general hospital nurses: prevalence, correlates, and its association with adverse events

  • Liping Chen
  • Chunliu Luo
  • Shuai Liu
  • Weiju Chen
  • Yaping Liu
  • Yunjia Li
  • Yun Du
  • Haihua Zou
  • Jiyang PanEmail author
Sleep Breathing Physiology and Disorders • Original Article



To investigate the prevalence and correlates of excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) in a population of hospital nurses in South China as well as the influence of EDS on the occurrence of adverse events.


A total of 1102 nurses working in a large medical center were invited to participate in this cross-sectional study (96.9% females, mean age 29.6 years). They all completed a self-reported questionnaire consisting of items on demographic variables, lifestyle factors, insomnia, anxiety, depression, and both work-related and sleep-related characteristics.


A total of 1048 nurses gave a valid response (response rate 95.1%). Among them, 169 (16.1%) reported EDS as defined as an Epworth Sleepiness Scale ≥ 14. Depression (adjusted odds ratio = 2.24, 95% confidence interval 1.51–3.31), anxiety (1.65; 1.02–2.67), insomnia (2.29; 1.56–3.36), rotating shift work (1.98; 1.03–3.83), and low interest in work (1.74; 1.01–2.99) were all independent risk factors of the occurrence of EDS. EDS is associated with the occurrence of adverse events after controlling for confounding factors (adjusted OR 1.83, CI 1.26 to 2.67).


EDS was common among this relatively young and healthy nurse population in south China. There were clear associations between EDS and depression, anxiety, insomnia, rotating shift work, and low work-related interest. Furthermore, EDS was an independent risk factor in the occurrence of adverse events (AEs) in our subjects.


Excessive daytime sleepiness Nurses Depression Anxiety Rotating shift work Adverse events 



The authors would like to express their appreciation to all of the nurses who completed the questionnaires. They would also like to thank Dr. Jihui Zhang, Dr. Liu Yaping, and Dr. Liu Shuai at the Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong for their contribution in preparing this report.

Funding information

The research was supported in part by the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province, China (No. 2013B022000076) and the Nursing Project Special Fund of Jinan University, China (No. 2013303).

Compliance with ethical standards

This study was approved by the Hospital’s Ethics Committee, and all participants provided written consents.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Liping Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Chunliu Luo
    • 3
  • Shuai Liu
    • 4
  • Weiju Chen
    • 5
  • Yaping Liu
    • 6
  • Yunjia Li
    • 5
  • Yun Du
    • 5
  • Haihua Zou
    • 5
  • Jiyang Pan
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry, The First Affiliated HospitalJinan UniversityGuangzhouChina
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry, Guangzhou First People’s HospitalSchool of Medicine, South China University of TechnologyGuangzhouChina
  3. 3.Medical Imaging Center, The First Affiliated HospitalJinan UniversityGuangzhouChina
  4. 4.Department of Psychiatry, Nanfang HospitalSouthern Medical UniversityGuangzhouChina
  5. 5.Nursing Department, The First Affiliated HospitalJinan UniversityGuangzhouChina
  6. 6.Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of MedicineThe Chinese University of Hong KongHong Kong SARChina

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