Sleep complaints are common in a dialysis unit

Am J Kidney Dis. 1995 Nov;26(5):751-6. doi: 10.1016/0272-6386(95)90438-7.


Sleep disturbance among uremic patients is reported to be high, but data on the actual prevalence, clinical significance, and causative factors is limited. A sleep questionnaire was distributed to an entire hemodialysis unit of 64 patients. Of the 54 patients who completed the survey, 83.3% had sleep-wake complaints. Disturbed sleep was reported by 28 patients (51.8%), and causes were secondary to delayed sleep onset in 25 patients (46.3%), frequent awakening in 19 patients (35.2%), restless legs syndrome (RLS) in 18 patients (33.3%), and generalized restlessness in six patients (11.1%). Daytime sleepiness was the most frequent complaint, reported by 36 patients (66.7%), and RLS was the second most frequent specific complaint, reported by 31 patients (57.4%). Symptoms of sleep apnea were described by seven patients (13.0%). Male gender, age more than 60 years, RLS, and caffeine intake were associated with more sleep-wake complaints (P = 0.009, P = 0.002, P = 0.028, and P = 0.008, respectively). Urea and creatinine levels were higher in patients with RLS (P = 0.04 and P = 0.08, respectively); otherwise, no other metabolic or demographic variable was associated with specific sleep disorders or disturbance. Sleep problems are very common in dialysis patients and likely contribute to the impaired quality of life experienced by many of these patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Hemodialysis Units, Hospital
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / complications*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Renal Dialysis*
  • Restless Legs Syndrome / complications
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / complications*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires