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The effect of partial sleep deprivation on computer-based measures of fitness to drive
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Stress Research Institute. Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Work and organizational psychology. University of Regensburg, Germany.
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2016 (English)In: Sleep and Breathing, ISSN 1520-9512, E-ISSN 1522-1709, Vol. 20, no 1, 285-292 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

PURPOSE: Using a partial sleep deprivation paradigm, the aim of the study was to investigate the sensitivity of a computer-based test battery of fitness to drive to detect impairments related to sleepiness.

METHODS: Forty-seven healthy subjects (34 females, mean age 26.0 ± 6.8 years) participated in a counterbalanced within-subject design of two conditions: (i) normal night sleep and (ii) partial sleep deprivation (PSD) with 4 h time in bed. For the assessment of fitness to drive, we used a validated traffic psychological test battery. Moreover, well-established measures of sleepiness highly responsive to sleep deprivation were applied: the Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS), pupillography (Pupil Unrest Index (PUI) as physiological sleepiness indicator) and two sustained attention tasks (psychomotor Vigilance Task and Mackworth Clock Test).

RESULTS: Subjective and physiological sleepiness were significantly increased after PSD, accompanied by large (d > 1.50 for KSS) and medium (d = 0.55 for PUI) effect sizes. Sleepiness-related performance decrements were found in both sustained attention tasks (d = 0.59-0.77). Assessing driving-related ability, PSD induced decrements only in the test domain Reaction Test (reaction time d = 0.54 and motor time d = 0.45). All other subtests-as well as the overall judgement of fitness to drive-were not significantly affected by PSD.

CONCLUSION: In contrast to established tests of sustained attention and subjective sleepiness, computer-based test batteries of fitness to drive might lack sensitivity to core aspects of sleepiness as they mainly consist of short and stimulating subtests. Therefore, tasks that require sustained attention should be an essential part of traffic psychological test batteries when sleepiness is a potential issue.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 20, no 1, 285-292 p.
Keyword [en]
Daytime sleepiness, Partial sleep deprivation, Fitness to drive, Sustained attention
National Category
Health Sciences Psychology
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-125089DOI: 10.1007/s11325-015-1220-0ISI: 000372160800047PubMedID: 26115651Local ID: P-3321OAI: diva2:891721
Available from: 2016-01-07 Created: 2016-01-07 Last updated: 2016-06-22Bibliographically approved

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Schwarz, Johanna F. A.
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