Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Armodafinil for Insomnia After Cancer Treatment

New Study (1)Abstract


Insomnia is a distressing and often persisting consequence of cancer. Although cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) is the treatment of choice in the general population, the use of CBT-I in patients with cancer is complicated, because it can result in transient but substantial increases in daytime sleepiness. In this study, we evaluated whether CBT-I, in combination with the wakefulness-promoting agent armodafinil (A), results in better insomnia treatment outcomes in cancer survivors than CBT-I alone.


We report on a randomized trial of 96 cancer survivors (mean age, 56 years; female, 87.5%; breast cancer, 68%). The primary analyses examined whether ? one of the 7-week intervention conditions (ie, CBT-I, A, or both), when compared with a placebo capsule (P) group, produced significantly greater clinical gains. Insomnia was assessed by the Insomnia Severity Index and sleep quality by the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Inventory. All patients received sleep hygiene instructions.


Analyses controlling for baseline differences showed that both the CBT-I plus A (P = .001) and CBT-I plus P (P = .010) groups had significantly greater reductions in insomnia severity postintervention than the P group, with effect sizes of 1.31 and 1.02, respectively. Similar improvements were seen for sleep quality. Gains on both measures persisted 3 months later. CBT-I plus A was not significantly different from CBT-I plus P (P = .421), and A alone was not significantly different from P alone (P = .584).


CBT-I results in significant and durable improvements in insomnia and sleep quality. A did not significantly improve the efficacy of CBT-I or independently affect insomnia or sleep quality

Roscoe, J.A., Garland, S.N., Heckler, C.E., Perlis, M.L., Peoples, A.R., Shayne, M.,…Morrow, G.R. (2015). Randomized placebo-controlled trial of cognitive behavioral therapy and armodafinil for insomnia after cancer treatment. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 33(2), 165-171. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2014.57.6769.

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