Sleep disturbance constitutes a major risk factor for drinking relapse after alcohol withdrawal and necessitates regular follow-up. We reported previously that the sum-score of the 4 sleep items of the Hamilton Anxiety and Depression Scales (the Short Sleep Index [SSI]) constitutes a valid and simple sleep measurement tool. The objective of this study was to evaluate the psychometric features of the SSI relative to the lengthier Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), which is widely used for measuring sleep disturbance in patients with alcohol use disorders during and after alcohol withdrawal.
In this French, multicenter, cross-sectional survey, alcoholic patients were recruited in 2 academic hospitals and 1 community treatment center. Demographic data, alcohol history, and current consumption of alcohol and other abused substances were documented. The SSI and the PSQI questionnaires were completed in face-to-face interviews by a trained clinical research associate.
A total of 257 patients were studied (88 females), with a mean age of 49 years (range: 24-80 years). The prevalence of sleep disturbance as measured by the PSQI and the SSI was 73.5% and 74.3%, respectively. The correlation between the 2 indices was strong (r = 0.764; 95% CI: 0.709-0.811), with negative and positive predictive values for the SSI (score > 1) of 71.2% and 89%, respectively, and an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.91 (95% CI: 0.85-0.92). The discriminant and convergent validity of the SSI was found to be noninferior to the PSQI.
Compared to the PSQI, the SSI represents a quick, quantifiable, and reliable method that could help clinicians assess and manage sleep disturbance in alcoholic patients.