Piekarski, D., Sullivan, E. V., Pfefferbaum, A., & Zahr, N. M. (2022). Poor subjective sleep predicts compromised quality of life but not cognitive impairment in abstinent individuals with Alcohol Use Disorder. Alcohol, 103, 37-43
How disrupted sleep contributes to cognitive dysfunction over the dynamic course of Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) is an emerging topic of investigation. Here, the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) was used to evaluate subjective sleep in 90 individuals with AUD sober for an average of 3 months and in 50 healthy controls. Relative to controls, AUD individuals had higher global PSQI scores (worse sleep), higher scores on the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II), worse Quality of Life (QoL) indicators, and poorer performance on cognitive composite tests (executive functioning, attention and working memory, visual and verbal learning or memory). Among AUD individuals, a higher PSQI score correlated with a higher BDI-II score and worse QoL, but not with cognitive scales. Also noted in the AUD group were higher global PSQI scores in individuals also diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD) or generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). The four variables explained 29.8% of the variance in AUD PSQI scores. In women with AUD, the four factors explained 39.3% of the variance in PSQI scores (MDD was salient); in AUD men, the four measures explained 19.9% of the variance (QoL predominated). Together, these results suggest that poor PSQI-defined sleep does not predict cognitive performance in abstinent AUD individuals and further, that differential factors associate with poor sleep in men and women with AUD.