Do sleep disturbances predict or moderate the response to psychotherapy in bipolar disorder?

Louisa G. Sylvia, Stephanie Salcedo, Amy T. Peters, Pedro Vieira da Silva Magalhães, Ellen Frank, David J. Miklowitz, Michael W. Otto, Michael Berk, Andrew A. Nierenberg, Thilo Deckersbach

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This study examined whether sleep disturbance predicted or moderated responses to psychotherapy in participants who participated in STEP-BD, a national, multisite study that examined the effectiveness of different treatment combinations for bipolar disorder. Participants received either a brief psychosocial intervention called collaborative care (CC; n = 130) or intensive psychotherapy (IP; n = 163),with study-based pharmacotherapy. Participants (N = 243) were defined as current (past week) short sleepers (<6 hours/night), normal sleepers (6.5-8.5 hours/night), and long sleepers (≥9 hours/night), according to reported average nightly sleep duration theweek before randomization. Sleep disturbances did not predict the likelihood of recovery nor time until recovery from a depressive episode. There was no difference in recovery rates between IP versus CC for normal sleepers, and medium effect sizes were observed for differences in short and long sleepers. In this study, sleep did not play a major role in predicting or moderating response to psychotherapy in bipolar disorder.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)196-202
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nervous and Mental Disease
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Hypersomnia
  • Insomnia
  • Sleep disturbance

Cite this

Sylvia, L. G., Salcedo, S., Peters, A. T., da Silva Magalhães, P. V., Frank, E., Miklowitz, D. J., Otto, M. W., Berk, M., Nierenberg, A. A., & Deckersbach, T. (2017). Do sleep disturbances predict or moderate the response to psychotherapy in bipolar disorder? Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 205(3), 196-202.