Study: Medical residents sharper mentally with more sleep - FOX 35 News Orlando

Study: Medical residents sharper mentally with more sleep

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By Fox 2 News Staff

Photo Credit: Journal of the American Medical Association


Medical residents get precious little time to sleep, if any.  However, a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found they were sharper mentally when they got more sleep.

Researchers studied two groups of interns.  One worked normally and the other participated in periods of "protected sleep" where they were without their phones and pagers.

"The average amounts that interns slept increased by about 50 percent in the months in which interns had a protected sleep period from about two hours a night to about three hours a night," says University of Pennsylvania researcher Dr. Kevin Volpp.

"They slept earlier, longer and less disturbed.  We didn't completely give them a full night's sleep, but even the three hours, the 50 percent more sleep they got, was beneficial," says Dr. David Dinges, another researcher with the University of Pennsylvania.

"People had higher cognitive performance on the mornings following having protected sleep periods," Volpp says.

The study found no differences in mortality and readmission rates among patients.

Source: Journal of the American Medical Association

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