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Evaluating Sleep Quality in Older Adults: The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index can be used to detect sleep disturbances or deficits.

Smyth, Carole A. MSN, ANP-GNP, APRN, BC

AJN, American Journal of Nursing: May 2008 - Volume 108 - Issue 5 - p 42–50
doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000317300.33599.63
FEATURE: How To try this

Inadequate sleep—sleep of poor quality or insufficient duration or both—has been linked to health problems ranging from cognitive impairment to compromised immunity. Insomnia occurs more frequently after age 70, and more than half of adults ages 65 and older report at least one chronic sleep complaint. The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index is easily used to assess the quality and patterns of sleep in older adults. It consists of 18 questions covering seven areas in which sleep problems occur and can be completed in about 10 minutes. For a free online video demonstrating the use of this index, go to

Insomnia and other sleep problems are common among older adults. Use the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index to find out what disturbs patients' sleep.

Carole A. Smyth is an NP in the Medical Housecall Program at Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, NY.

The author of this article has disclosed no significant ties, financial or otherwise, to any company that might have an interest in the publication of this educational activity. Contact author:

How to Try This is a three-year project funded by a grant from the John A. Hartford Foundation to the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing at New York University's College of Nursing in collaboration with AJN. This initiative promotes the Hartford Institute's geriatric assessment tools, Try This: Best Practices in Nursing Care to Older The series will include articles and corresponding videos, all of which will be available for free online at Nancy A. Stotts, EdD, RN, FAAN (, and Sherry A. Greenberg, MSN, APRN, BC, GNP (, are coeditors of the print series. The articles and videos are to be used for educational purposes only. The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index is reprinted with the permission of Daniel J. Buysse, MD.

Routine use of Try This tools or approaches may require formal review and approval by your employer.

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.