Is melatonin useful for jet lag?

Medwave. 2015 Dec 21;15 Suppl 3:e6343. doi: 10.5867/medwave.2015.6343.
[Article in English, Spanish]

Abstract

Jet lag syndrome is an exogenous circadian rhythm sleep disorder, frequently reported in travelers who cross multiple time zones in a short period of time. Oral melatonin -a pineal neurohormone normally produced during darkness and responsible for regulating the body's circadian rhythms- has been used as treatment for this condition. Searching in Epistemonikos database, which is maintained by screening 30 databases, we identified four systematic reviews including 11 randomized trials. We combined the evidence using meta-analysis and generated a summary of findings table following the GRADE approach. We concluded the use of oral melatonin probably reduces symptoms associated with jet lag syndrome. It is not clear whether its use produces adverse effects; however, these would be probably mild.

El jet lag es un trastorno exógeno del sueño y el ritmo circadiano que ocurre frecuentemente en viajeros que cruzan múltiples zonas horarias en un tiempo reducido. La administración de melatonina oral, neurohormona epifisiaria relacionada con la regulación de ritmos circadianos, se ha utilizado con el fin de disminuir los síntomas que caracterizan esta condición. Utilizando la base de datos Epistemonikos, la cual es mantenida mediante búsquedas en 30 bases de datos, encontramos cuatro revisiones sistemáticas que en conjunto incluyen 11 estudios aleatorizados. Realizamos un metanálisis y tablas de resumen de los resultados utilizando el método GRADE. Concluimos que la administración de melatonina oral probablemente disminuye los síntomas asociados al jet lag, y que no está claro si se asocia a efectos adversos, aunque estos serían leves.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage
  • Antioxidants / adverse effects
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Circadian Rhythm / physiology
  • Humans
  • Jet Lag Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Melatonin / administration & dosage
  • Melatonin / adverse effects
  • Melatonin / therapeutic use*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Travel
  • Treatment Outcome

Substances

  • Antioxidants
  • Melatonin