Sleep quality worse in auto injury patients
Do patients with auto injuries experience worse sleep quality than those who are healthy or who have other types of neck pain? A recent study sought to measure the differences in sleep quality between patients with car crash pain, mechanical neck pain, and no neck pain. The researchers wanted to examine the relationship between pain intensity, disability, and sleep quality.
The research involved 19 patients with mechanical neck pain, 22 with whiplash, and 18 healthy patients who rated their pain, neck disability, and sleep quality. Significant differences were found in sleep quality, sleep efficiency, sleep disturbances, use of sleeping medication, and daytime dysfunction, even though patients reported the same sleep duration regardless of neck pain.
Patients with either form of neck pain exhibited higher scores when compared with healthy patients. The higher the pain intensity, the worse the sleep quality. Both pain and sleep disturbances should be addressed as part of treatment for patients with auto injuries or other forms of neck pain.
Valenza MC, et al. Alteration in sleep quality in patients with mechanical insidious neck pain and whiplash-associated neck pain. American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2012; 91(7):584-91.