Changes of Cerebral Tissue Oxygen Saturation at Sleep Transitions in Adolescents

  • Andreas J. Metz
  • F. Pugin
  • R. Huber
  • P. Achermann
  • M. Wolf
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 812)


In adults, cerebral oxy-([O2Hb]) and deoxyhemoglobin concentrations ([HHb]) change characteristically at transitions of sleep stages. The aims were to assess these changes in adolescents and additionally to measure tissue oxygen saturation (StO2) by near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). Previously it was reported that in adults [O2Hb] increased and [HHb] decreased at the transition from non-rapid eye movement sleep (NREMS) to REMS and wakefulness. Transitions to NREMS from REMS/wakefulness led to a decrease in [O2Hb] and an increase in [HHb]. We measured [O2Hb], [HHb] and tissue oxygenation (StO2) with NIRS approximately above the left prefrontal cortex in 12 healthy adolescent males (aged 10–16 years). We found comparable signs and magnitudes of changes in [O2Hb] and [HHb] as observed in adults. StO2 increased at the transitions from NREMS to REMS and decreased from REMS to NREMS and at sleep onset (all p < 0.01, linear mixed effects model). Changes in oxygen metabolism during sleep transitions are similar in adolescents and adults. In addition, we show for the first time temporal changes of StO2 at sleep transitions.


Near-infrared spectroscopy Sleep Sleep stage transitions Tissue oxygen saturation 



This work was supported by the University Research Priority Program “Integrative Human Physiology”, University of Zurich, Switzerland. The authors would like to thank Urs Bachofner and Madlaina Stauffer for their great support with data collection.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andreas J. Metz
    • 1
    • 2
  • F. Pugin
    • 3
  • R. Huber
    • 3
    • 4
  • P. Achermann
    • 5
    • 4
  • M. Wolf
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
  1. 1.Biomedical Optics Research Laboratory, Division of NeonatologyUniversity Hospital ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  2. 2.Institute for Biomedical Engineering, ETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  3. 3.Child Development CenterUniversity Children’s Hospital ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  4. 4.Zurich Center for Integrative Human PhysiologyUniversity of ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  5. 5.Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Chronobiology and Sleep ResearchUniversity of ZurichZurichSwitzerland

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