Insomnia is bad for the heart

Sep 04, 2009

Can't sleep at night? A new study published in the journal Sleep has found that people who suffer from insomnia have heightened nighttime blood pressure, which can lead to cardiac problems. The investigation, which measured the 24-hour blood pressure of insomniacs compared to sound sleepers, was conducted by researchers from the Université de Montréal, its affiliated Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur de Montréal Sleep Disorders Centre and the Université Laval.

"Over many years, chronic insomnia can have negative effects on the hearts of otherwise healthy individuals," says lead author Paola A. Lanfranchi, a professor in the Université de Montréal Faculty of Medicine and researcher at the Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur de Montréal Disorders Centre. "Whereas blood pressure decreases in regular sleepers and gives their heart a rest, insomnia provokes higher nighttime blood pressure that can cause long-term cardiovascular risks and damage the heart."

The findings are important given that insomnia, which is a chronic difficulty falling or staying asleep, affects up to 48 percent of the population at some point in their lives. As part of the study, the scientific team recruited 13 otherwise healthy chronic insomniacs and 13 good sleepers. Subjects spent 40 hours in the sleep laboratory: two nights for adaptation and one for monitoring followed by the intervening day.

"Blood pressure cycles are mainly linked to the sleep-wake cycle," says co author Jacques Montplaisir, a professor in the Université de Montréal Department of Psychiatry and director of Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur de Montréal Disorders Center. "Since blood pressure is heightened among insomniacs, those with overt cardiac disease are particularly at risk for progression of the disease."

More information: The article "Nighttime in Normotensive Subjects With Chronic : Implications for Cardiovascular Risk," published in Sleep was authored by Paola A. Lanfranchi, Marie-Hélčne Pennestri, Lorraine Fradette, Marie Dumont and Jacques Montplaisir of the Université de Montréal and its affiliated Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur de Montréal, as well as Charles M. Morin of the Université Laval.

Source: University of Montreal (news : web)

Explore further: AMA examines economic impact of physicians

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

22-year study finds adults aren't active enough

May 12, 2009

A new study has sounded the alarm that the majority of Canadian adults are inactive over their lifespan and don't exercise enough during their leisure time. Published in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition an ...

Scientists discover gene responsible for brain's aging

Jan 16, 2009

Will scientists one day be able to slow the aging of the brain and prevent diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's? Absolutely - once the genetic coding associated with neuronal degeneration has been unraveled.

Recommended for you

AMA examines economic impact of physicians

9 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Physicians who mainly engage in patient care contribute a total of $1.6 trillion in economic output, according to the American Medical Association (AMA)'s Economic Impact Study.

Less-schooled whites lose longevity, study finds

9 hours ago

Barbara Gentry slowly shifts her heavy frame out of a chair and uses a walker to move the dozen feet to a chair not far from the pool table at the Buford Senior Center. Her hair is white and a cough sometimes interrupts her ...

How to keep your fitness goals on track

9 hours ago

(HealthDay)—The New Year's resolutions many made to get fit have stalled by now. And one expert thinks that's because many people set their goals too high.

Suddenly health insurance is not for sale

Apr 18, 2014

(HealthDay)— Darlene Tucker, an independent insurance broker in Scotts Hill, Tenn., says health insurers in her area aren't selling policies year-round anymore.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Cancer stem cells linked to drug resistance

Most drugs used to treat lung, breast and pancreatic cancers also promote drug-resistance and ultimately spur tumor growth. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have discovered ...

Making graphene in your kitchen

Graphene has been touted as a wonder material—the world's thinnest substance, but super-strong. Now scientists say it is so easy to make you could produce some in your kitchen.