Aberrant sleep patterns in children with the rett syndrome

Cathleen C. Piazza, Wayne Fisher, Karen Kiesewetter, Lynn Bowman, Hugo Moser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Previous studies on the characteristics of disturbed sleep I wake patterns in children with the Rett syndrome have yielded inconsistent findings. In the current study, momentary time sampling procedures were used to measure the sleep/wake patterns of 20 girls with classical Rett syndrome. These patients had significantly more total sleep than age peers (M = 110.1; Zm = 2.58; p = .01), significantly less nighttime sleep (M= 80.8; Zm = −7.53; p<.0001), and significantly more daytime sleep (M = 24.5; Zm=8.71; p<.0001). Night sleep was negatively correlated with age (r = -.59; p<.01); day sleep was positively correlated with age (r = .54; p = .01). These girls also displayed night wakings on 20.9% of nights, delayed sleep onset on 67.8% of nights and early wakings on 24.5% of nights. These data clearly demonstrate that children with the Rett syndrome have markedly impaired sleep/wake patterns and suggests that the sleep dysfunction may worsen over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)488-493
Number of pages6
JournalBrain and Development
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Rett syndrome
  • behavioral assessment
  • sleep disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Clinical Neurology


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