The association between physical activity and sleep characteristics in people with multiple sclerosis

Mult Scler Relat Disord. 2017 Feb;12:29-33. doi: 10.1016/j.msard.2016.12.010. Epub 2016 Dec 23.


Study objectives: The majority of individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS) suffer from sleep disorders. In this study, we investigated the relationship between physical activity and sleep characteristics in MS patients.

Methods: Sixty MS patients were recruited in the study. Sleep characteristics were assessed using the Actisleep device while physical activity levels were assessed using mobility accelerometer.

Results: The results showed that means (±SD) of sleep latency (SL) and sleep efficiency (ES) for MS patients were 23.89±13.23min and 87.52±76.89% respectively. The participants' total time in sleep (TST) and wake after sleep onset (WASO) were 353.25±63.98min and 83.84±42.23min respectively. With respect to physical activity levels, means (±SD) of light (LA), moderate (MA), vigorous (VA) activities and moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) were 11,660.15±18,145, 212.04±148.67, 9.70±9.26 and 222.88±154.60 counts per minute, respectively. Pearson's correlation analysis showed that WASO correlated significantly with LA, MA and MVPA (P<0.05). These correlations remained significant even after accounting for age, body weight and disease severity (P<0.05).

Conclusion: The results show a positive relationship of physical activity with sleep parameters in individuals with MS.

Keywords: Multiple sclerosis; Physical activity; Sleep characteristics; Sleep disturbances.

MeSH terms

  • Accelerometry
  • Adult
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Exercise* / physiology
  • Humans
  • Motor Activity* / physiology
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / epidemiology
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / physiopathology*
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / therapy
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / epidemiology
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / physiopathology
  • Sleep* / physiology
  • Time Factors
  • Wakefulness / physiology