Enuresis nocturna and sleep quality


Enuresis nocturna is a common problem. Numerous etiologic factors have been investigated, and various theories have been proposed. The objectives of our study were to establish the differences in the sleep quality of nocturnal enuretic patients from that of healthy voluntary subjects, and the changes after treatment with desmopressin acetate (DDAVP), among primary school children. The study comprised 19 children with primary nocturnal enuresis and 32 healthy children in the control group. Subjective assessment of sleep was determined with the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) questionnaire. PSQI scores for each patient and control subject were determined before the study was started and after a month time interval. The sleep quality of the nocturnal enuretic children was poor. We found lower scores after a month’s treatment with DDAVP, and significant differences in two dimensions in the patient group: ‘subjective sleep quality’ and ‘sleep disturbances’. When we asked the patients’ group what caused the sleep disturbance, they replied ‘the fear or the anxiety of bedwetting during sleep’. This anxiety or fear seemed to be a factor that probably affected their sleep quality. So, active treatment (medical or behavioral) should be started as soon as the child is ready to receive it or when the enuretic child wants to be dry when asleep.

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We thank Pelin Ertan for her contribution to the preliminary oral presentation of the study at the 50th National Congress for Pediatrics in 2006 in Turkey.

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Correspondence to Ipek Akil.

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Gozmen, S., Keskin, S. & Akil, I. Enuresis nocturna and sleep quality. Pediatr Nephrol 23, 1293–1296 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00467-008-0817-y

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  • Desmopressin
  • Enuresis nocturna
  • Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index
  • Sleep quality