Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

CBT More Effective Than Zopiclone for Insomnia

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

CBT More Effective Than Zopiclone for Insomnia

Article excerpt

Cognitive-behavioral therapy led to greater improvements in a variety of sleep measures than did zopiclone in adults with insomnia, Norwegian researchers report.

Borge Sivertsen, Psy.D., of the University of Bergen, Norway, and his colleagues found in a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial that among older patients randomly assigned to CBT, sleep efficiency, total wake time, and duration of slow-wave sleep were all significantly more improved by 6 weeks and 6 months than were patients taking zopiclone (JAMA 2006;295:2851-8).

A total of 45 patients enrolled from a Norwegian clinic received either CBT (18 patients), zopiclone (15 patients), or a placebo (12 patients). The mean age of the patients was 61 years.

Sleep measures were assessed at 6 weeks, which was the end of the treatment protocol. These measures were also assessed at 6 months, via polysomnography (PSG) and patient-reported sleep diaries filled out each morning for 2 weeks, at baseline, and at the two subsequent assessment points.

At 6 weeks, PSG data showed that subjects on CBT had a mean 52% improvement in total wake time, which rose to 56% at 6 months; those on zopiclone had a 4% and 10% improvement, respectively. Diary-reported data showed that the subjects believed the efficacy of both treatments to be even greater, with self-reported wake-time reductions in the CBT group of 34% and 51% at the two time points, and 16% and 27% for the zopiclone group.

Similarly, mean sleep efficiency, the ratio of total sleep time to time spent in bed multiplied by 100, improved by 9% and 11% at 6 weeks and 6 months, as assessed by PSG. …

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