Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Services Research & Development

Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Sleep management in posttraumatic stress disorder: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

Maher AR, Apaydin EA, Hilton L, Chen C, Troxel W, Hall O, Azhar G, Larkin J, Motala A, Hempel S. Sleep management in posttraumatic stress disorder: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Sleep Medicine. 2021 Nov 1; 87:203-219.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


OBJECTIVE: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can lead to many negative secondary outcomes for patients, including sleep disturbances. The objective of this meta-analysis is (1) to evaluate the effect of interventions for adults with PTSD on sleep outcomes, PTSD outcomes, and adverse events, and (2) to evaluate the differential effectiveness of interventions aiming to improve sleep compared to those that do not. METHODS: Nine databases were searched for relevant randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in PTSD from January 1980 to October 2019. Two independent reviewers screened 7176 records, assessed 2139 full-text articles, and included 89 studies in 155 publications for this review. Sleep, PTSD, and adverse event outcomes were abstracted and meta-analyses were performed using the Hartung-Knapp-Sidik-Jonkman method for random effects. RESULTS: Interventions improved sleep outcomes (standardized mean difference [SMD] -0.56; confidence interval [CI] -0.75 to -0.37; 49 RCTs) and PTSD symptoms (SMD -0.48; CI -0.67 to -0.29; 44 RCTs) across studies. Adverse events were not related to interventions overall (RR 1.17; CI 0.91 to 1.49; 15 RCTs). Interventions targeting sleep improved sleep outcomes more than interventions that did not target sleep (p  =  0.03). Improvement in PTSD symptoms did not differ between intervention types. CONCLUSIONS: Interventions for patients with PTSD significantly improve sleep outcomes, especially interventions that specifically target sleep. Treatments for adults with PTSD directed towards sleep improvement may benefit patients who suffer from both ailments.

Questions about the HSR&D website? Email the Web Team.

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.