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Low repeatability of Epworth Sleepiness Scale after short intervals in a sleep clinic population


Grewe, Fabian A; Roeder, Maurice; Bradicich, Matteo; Schwarz, Esther I; Held, Ulrike; Thiel, Sira; Gaisl, Thomas; Sievi, Noriane A; Kohler, Malcolm (2020). Low repeatability of Epworth Sleepiness Scale after short intervals in a sleep clinic population. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, 16(5):757-764.

Abstract

Study objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the short-term repeatability of the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) in patients with suspected obstructive sleep apnea and to determine whether transitory sleepiness of the patient influenced ESS results.

Methods: Adult participants with suspected obstructive sleep apnea taking part in a study on the diagnostic accuracy of repeated sleep studies were eligible. For assessment of repeatability, the agreement between 2 sequential ESS scores obtained within 1 day (same-day group) or on different days within 1 week (same-week group) was evaluated. By analyzing the within-day repeatability, a possible influence of situational sleepiness on ESS results was assessed. By comparing correlations of sequential scores between both groups, a potential influence of test day-specific sleepiness on ESS results was evaluated. Data were analyzed using Bland-Altman plots, intraclass correlation coefficients, standard error of measurement analysis, and relative amounts of ESS discrepancies beyond 2, 3, 5, and 7 points.

Results: Forty participants (mean age, 47.7 ± 15.4 years; 67.5% men) were included in this study, with 20 in each group. Bland-Altman analysis demonstrated considerable variability of repeated scores (mean ± 1.96 × SD = 1.93 [-3.81 to 7.66]). Discrepancies of at least 3 points between sequential ESS scores were found in 48% of all participants. Comparison of ESS repeatability between both groups showed no evidence for a difference.

Conclusions: A clinically relevant variability in ESS scores was found, even when repeated on the same day, possibly because of situational sleepiness influencing ESS results. Changes in ESS in response to interventions should be interpreted with caution because of its low test-retest reliability.

Keywords: Epworth Sleepiness Scale; daytime sleepiness; repeatability; test-retest reliability.

Abstract

Study objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the short-term repeatability of the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) in patients with suspected obstructive sleep apnea and to determine whether transitory sleepiness of the patient influenced ESS results.

Methods: Adult participants with suspected obstructive sleep apnea taking part in a study on the diagnostic accuracy of repeated sleep studies were eligible. For assessment of repeatability, the agreement between 2 sequential ESS scores obtained within 1 day (same-day group) or on different days within 1 week (same-week group) was evaluated. By analyzing the within-day repeatability, a possible influence of situational sleepiness on ESS results was assessed. By comparing correlations of sequential scores between both groups, a potential influence of test day-specific sleepiness on ESS results was evaluated. Data were analyzed using Bland-Altman plots, intraclass correlation coefficients, standard error of measurement analysis, and relative amounts of ESS discrepancies beyond 2, 3, 5, and 7 points.

Results: Forty participants (mean age, 47.7 ± 15.4 years; 67.5% men) were included in this study, with 20 in each group. Bland-Altman analysis demonstrated considerable variability of repeated scores (mean ± 1.96 × SD = 1.93 [-3.81 to 7.66]). Discrepancies of at least 3 points between sequential ESS scores were found in 48% of all participants. Comparison of ESS repeatability between both groups showed no evidence for a difference.

Conclusions: A clinically relevant variability in ESS scores was found, even when repeated on the same day, possibly because of situational sleepiness influencing ESS results. Changes in ESS in response to interventions should be interpreted with caution because of its low test-retest reliability.

Keywords: Epworth Sleepiness Scale; daytime sleepiness; repeatability; test-retest reliability.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Prevention Institute (EBPI)
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Pneumology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
Life Sciences > Neurology
Health Sciences > Neurology (clinical)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine, Neurology, Clinical Neurology
Language:English
Date:15 May 2020
Deposited On:03 Dec 2020 10:19
Last Modified:28 Feb 2021 08:16
Publisher:American Academy of Sleep Medicine
ISSN:1550-9389
OA Status:Closed
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.5664/jcsm.8350
PubMed ID:32039756

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