Sleep experiences of parents of children 18 years or younger with sickle cell disease during the COVID-19 pandemic: a qualitative study

Jennel C. Osborne, Michelle Odlum, Aziza Sedrak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Study Objectives: The coronavirus disease pandemic has highlighted disparities in health care. Parents assist in sickle cell disease management in children. Understanding sleep in parents of children who are diagnosed with sickle cell disease is an important facet of disease management. Our objectives were to identify sleep characteristics of parents of children with sickle cell disease age 18 years or younger during the coronavirus disease pandemic, to investigate measures used by parents to achieve restful sleep, and to discuss how sleep may be improved in parents of children diagnosed with sickle cell disease. Methods: This study conducted 14 face-to-face semistructured interviews with parents of children diagnosed with sickle cell disease. A majority of the interviews (93%) were conducted at a hematology clinic. Qualitative thematic analysis was used to analyze data. Results: All parents reported that their child experienced pain because of sickle cell disease. Most parents (86.7%) reported that their child was diagnosed with sickle cell anemia. Four themes were identified: difficulty obtaining restful sleep during their child’s sickle cell crisis, sleep during the coronavirus disease pandemic, factors affecting sleep, and effects of sleep disturbance and deprivation on parental performance. Conclusions: This research has highlighted some of the difficulties experienced by parents of children who are diagnosed with sickle cell disease and allows for additional insight into the sleep experiences of parents as they attempt to manage their child’s disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)777-782
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Sleep Medicine
Volume20
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 2024
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • SCD
  • parents of children with SCD
  • pediatrics
  • qualitative study
  • sickle cell disease
  • sleep

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