The Effects of Timed Blue-Green Light on Sleep-Wake Patterns in Females with Alzheimer’s Disease

November 26, 2015
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Primary Investigators:
LuAnn Nowak, PhDc
Jean E. Davis, PhD

Purpose:

  1. Compare the effects of timed blue-green light given in the morning or evening on sleep efficiency (SE), sleep fragmentation (SF), and excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) in female nursing home patients with AD;
  2. Examine the feasibility of delivering bright light via a cap visor light to patients with AD.

Design:
A two group repeated measures crossover design with convenience sampling was used.  Subjects with AD were randomized to 1 of 2 protocols: morning/evening light or evening/morning light.

Methods:
Bright blue-green light was delivered via the Feel Bright Light – a cap visor-mounted device – for 45 minutes at 8000 lux in the morning or evening according to group assignment for 14 days.  SE and SF were measured via wrist actigraphy; EDS was measured utilizing the Stanford Sleepiness Scale.

Results:
SE and EDS improved with morning light. SF remained unchanged. The Feel Bright Light was well-tolerated for 45 minutes at 8000 lux without side effects. Other findings noted improvements in global function including verbal ability and orientation.

Conclusion:
The Feel Bright Light has potential as a safe and manageable bright light delivery method, well-suited to use in individuals with dementia.