Sleep Intervention Study

Our research shows sleep problems complicate recovery in over 50% of children after pediatric critical care, particularly in children with brain injury.  Sleep problems lead to worse physical, cognitive, and emotional morbidities as well as worse quality of life. This is a vital finding because sleep problems are modifiable through intervention.

Our multidisciplinary team treats children with a holistic approach as part of the PCCNRP at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital. Utilizing the well-established PCCNRP infrastructure, this study tests a novel early intervention, rather than waiting weeks to start therapy when sleep problems are established, and seeks to advance translational science looking to understand mechanisms of differential response to intervention.

Aim 1: Evaluate an early intervention during acute hospitalization to determine if we can prevent sleep problems in the weeks after hospitalization.

Aim 2: Evaluate difference in treatment response to our intervention through the use of novel and non-invasive biomarkers.

We hypothesize combining a developmentally tailored cognitive behavioral therapy intervention (for children and their parent/caregiver) while still hospitalized with online supplemental resources targeting healthy sleep will significantly reduce sleep problems.

This is critical because a successful and generalizable early intervention that prevents sleep problems after brain injury would greatly accelerate recovery given the importance of healthy sleep to healing of the injured brain and its development during childhood.

This project is generously funded by the Friends of Doernbecher Foundation.