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Scales to assess sleep impairment in Parkinson's disease: Critique and recommendations


  • Potential conflict of interest: Nothing to report.


There is a broad spectrum of sleep disturbances observed in Parkinson's disease (PD). A variety of scales have been applied to the evaluation of PD sleep and wakefulness, but only a small number have been assessed specifically for clinimetric properties in the PD population. The movement disorder society has commissioned this task force to examine these scales and to assess their use in PD. A systematic literature review was conducted to explore the use of sleep scales in PD and to determine which scales qualified for a detailed critique. The task force members, all of whom have extensive experience in assessing sleep in PD reviewed each of the scales using a structured proforma. Scales were categorized into recommended, suggested and listed according to predefined criteria. A total of 48 potential scales were identified from the search and reviewed. Twenty-nine were excluded because they did not meet review criteria or were variations of scales already included, leaving 19 scales that were critiqued and rated by the task force based on the rating criteria. Only six were found to meet criteria for recommendation or suggestion by the task force: the PD sleep scale (PDSS) and the Pittsburgh sleep quality index (PSQI) are recommended for rating overall sleep problems to screen and to measure severity, the SCOPA-sleep (SCOPA) is recommended for rating overall sleep problems both to screen and to measure severity, and for rating daytime sleepiness; the Epworth sleepiness scale (ESS) is recommended for rating daytime sleepiness to screen and to measure severity; the inappropriate sleep composite score (ISCS) is suggested for rating severe daytime sleepiness or sleep attacks to screen and to measure severity; and the Stanford sleepiness scale (SSS) is suggested for rating sleepiness and to measure severity at a specific moment. The task force does not recommend the development of new scales, but emphasizes the need for educational efforts to train physicians in sleep interview techniques and polysomnography. © 2010 Movement Disorder Society