Søvnproblemer hos barn med føtal alkoholspektrumforstyrrelser med og uten ADHD eller epilepsi.

Forskere fra Regional Kompetansetjeneste–Medfødte russkader-Sørlandet sykehus, NTNU og Universitetet i Agder har i denne studien undersøkt forekomst av søvnproblemer hos barn med føtal alkoholspektrumforstyrrelse (FASD) og forholdet mellom foreldrerapporterte søvnproblemer i ulike FASD-undergrupper som ADHD eller epilepsi. Omsorgspersoner for 53 barn inngikk i denne prospektive undersøkelsen. Funn i studien viste at søvnproblemer var svært vanlig hos FASD-barn uavhengig av undergruppe, men barn med ADHD hadde mest søvnproblemer. Forskerne påpeker viktigheten av screening for søvnproblemer hos alle barn med FASD, fordi søvnproblemene hos disse pasientene kan behandles.

Thorsten Gerstner​, Hans Inge Sævareid, Åse Ribe Johnsen, Gro Løhaugen, Jon Skranes

Studien er publisert i Alcohol: Clinical and Experimental Research.

Background: Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) describes a combination of developmental, cognitive, and behavioral disabilities in children with prenatal exposure to alcohol. The literature suggests that there are higher rates of sleep disturbances in these children. Few studies have investigated sleep disturbances in relation to common comorbidities of FASD. We examined the prevalence of disturbed sleep and the relationship between parent-reported sleep problems in different FASD subgroups and comorbidities like epilepsy or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and impact on clinical functioning.
Methods: In this prospective cross-sectional survey, caregivers of 53 children with FASD completed the Sleep Disturbance Scale for Children (SDSC). Information about comorbidities was collected, and EEG and assessment of IQ, daily-life executive and adaptive functioning were performed. Group comparisons and ANCOVA interaction models were used to test the associations between different sleep disturbances and clinical factors that could interfere with sleep.
Results: An abnormal sleep score on the SDSC was very common, affecting 79% of children (n = 42) with equal prevalence in all FASD subgroups. Difficulty falling asleep was the most common sleep problem, followed by difficulty staying asleep and waking early. The incidence of epilepsy was 9.4%, with an abnormal EEG seen in 24.5%, and a diagnosis of ADHD in 47.2% of children. The distribution of these conditions was equal in all FASD subgroups. Children with signs of sleep disturbance had poorer working memory, executive function, and adaptive functioning. Children with ADHD had a greater prevalence of sleep disturbance than those without ADHD (OR 1.36; 95% CI 1.03 to 1.79).
Conclusion: Problems with sleep are very common in FASD children and seem independent of FASD subgroup and the presence of epilepsy or a pathological EEG finding, while those with ADHD had more sleep problems. The study underscores the importance of screening for sleep disturbances in all children with FASD as these problems may be treatable.