Impact of Cranial Electrostimulation on Sleep: A Systematic Review

  • Anam AseemEmail author
  • Mohammed Ejaz Hussain



This paper aimed to systematically review the effectiveness of cranial electrostimulation (CES) to improve sleep.


Electronic databases such as MEDLINE, CENTRAL and EMBASE were systematically searched from inception up to December 2018 to retrieve relevant literature. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs), crossover studies, quasi-experimental non-randomized controlled trials and pre–post-single-group experimental design investigating the effect of cranial electrostimulation on sleep assessed by either objective or subjective parameters were included in the present systematic review.


Twenty-three articles were found to be relevant and were then assessed for their characteristics. Out of the 23 studies, only 6 were RCTs. All the identified RCTs underwent quality assessment for their methodology using 11-point PEDro scale. Fifteen out of 23 studies (5 out of 6 RCTs) demonstrated that CES is beneficial to induce and improve sleep in various populations as assessed by both subjective and objective outcome measures.


After critically analyzing the literature, it is concluded that cranial electrostimulation treatment leads to positive improvements in sleep parameters in various diseased and healthy population; however, further studies are needed to support the use of CES for sleep problems.


Sleep Sleep disturbance Insomnia Cranial electrostimulation CES Electrosleep 



The authors would like to thank Ms. Pooja Bhati, Ph.D. scholar, Centre for Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Sciences, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, India for providing insight and expertise in paper writing.


This work was supported by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India, under Cognitive Science Research Initiative (CSRI), Sanction no. DST/CSRI/2017/209

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sleep Research Group, Neurophysiology Lab, Centre for Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation SciencesJamia Millia Islamia (A Central University)New DelhiIndia

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