The use of pharmacotherapy in the treatment of pediatric insomnia in primary care: rational approaches. A consensus meeting summary.

Judith A. Owens*, Deborah Babcock, Jeffrey Blumer, Ronald Chervin, Richard Ferber, Mark Goetting, Daniel Glaze, Anna Ivanenko, Jodi Mindell, Marsha Rappley, Carol Rosen, Stephen Sheldon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

92 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: To formulate a rational approach to the pharmacologic treatment of pediatric insomnia, and to develop clinical guidelines regarding indications, target populations, and parameters for the use of these medications, especially by community-based pediatricians. PARTICIPANTS: A multidisciplinary task force developed under the auspices of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, which included experts in pediatric sleep medicine, psychiatry, pharmacology, neurology, and general pediatrics. EVIDENCE: Review of existing data regarding current use of over-the-counter and prescription medications for pediatric insomnia in the primary care practice setting, and of empirical data on the pharmacology, safety, efficacy, and tolerability of medications commonly used for the treatment of pediatric insomnia. CONSENSUS PROCESS: Group consensus definition of pediatric insomnia and clinical guidelines; working group recommendations regarding special populations and future directions. CONCLUSIONS: Use of medications for pediatric insomnia should be diagnostically driven, and should be implemented in conjunction with empirically-based behavioral treatment strategies and adequate sleep hygiene. Specific target populations include children with neurodevelopmental disorders, pervasive developmental disorders, chronic medical conditions, and psychiatric disorders. Additional research, including clinical trials, is critically needed to provide an evidence-based approach to the use of these medications in clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-59
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of clinical sleep medicine : JCSM : official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 15 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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