Skip to main content

Free Content Quantitative electroencephalography during rapid eye movement (REM) and non‐REM sleep in combat‐exposed veterans with and without post‐traumatic stress disorder

Download Article:

You have access to the full text article on a website external to Ingenta Connect.

Please click here to view this article on Wiley Online Library.

You may be required to register and activate access on Wiley Online Library before you can obtain the full text. If you have any queries please visit Wiley Online Library



Sleep disturbances are a hallmark feature of post‐traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and associated with poor clinical outcomes. Few studies have examined sleep quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG), a technique able to detect subtle differences that polysomnography does not capture. We hypothesized that greater high‐frequency qEEG would reflect ‘hyperarousal’ in combat veterans with PTSD (n =16) compared to veterans without PTSD (n =13). EEG power in traditional EEG frequency bands was computed for artifact‐free sleep epochs across an entire night. Correlations were performed between qEEG and ratings of PTSD symptoms and combat exposure. The groups did not differ significantly in whole‐night qEEG measures for either rapid eye movement (REM) or non‐REM (NREM) sleep. Non‐significant medium effect sizes suggest less REM beta (opposite to our hypothesis), less REM and NREM sigma and more NREM gamma in combat veterans with PTSD. Positive correlations were found between combat exposure and NREM beta (PTSD group only), and REM and NREM sigma (non‐PTSD group only). Results did not support global hyperarousal in PTSD as indexed by increased beta qEEG activity. The correlation of sigma activity with combat exposure in those without PTSD and the non‐significant trend towards less sigma activity during both REM and NREM sleep in combat veterans with PTSD suggests that differential information processing during sleep may characterize combat‐exposed military veterans with and without PTSD.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA 2: Neuroscience Clinical and Translational Research Center, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA 3: Washington and Jefferson College, Washington, PA, USA

Publication date: February 1, 2013

Access Key

Free Content
Free content
New Content
New content
Open Access Content
Open access content
Partial Open Access Content
Partial Open access content
Subscribed Content
Subscribed content
Free Trial Content
Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more