Developmental Course and Determinants of Sleep Disturbances in Adolescents With Spina Bifida

Caitlin B. Murray*, Alexandra C. Kirsch, Tonya M. Palermo, Grayson N. Holmbeck, Victoria Kolbuck, Alexandra Psihogios, Terri Pigott

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Objectives To examine (1) trajectories of sleep disturbances in adolescents with spina bifida (SB) compared with a typically developing (TD) group over a 10-year period and (2) individual, family, and socioeconomic determinants of changes in sleep disturbances. Methods Participants were 68 families of youth with SB and 68 families of TD youth. Parent-report of adolescent sleep was collected every 2 years at 6 time points (T1: ages 8–9; T6: ages 18–19). Multiple informants and measures were used to examine internalizing, externalizing, and inattention symptoms, dyadic/family conflict, socioeconomic status (SES), and family income. Results Sleep disturbances increased over the 10-year period. Youth with SB had greater sleep disturbances during early adolescence. Greater preadolescent externalizing symptoms, greater parent–child and marital conflict, and lower SES predicted increased sleep disturbances. Conclusions Sleep disturbances are common and persistent in adolescents with SB. Sleep assessment and management are important clinical and research priorities in this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)631-642
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of pediatric psychology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016


  • adolescents
  • longitudinal research
  • sleep
  • spina bifida

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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