Tailored Lighting Intervention to Promote Entrainment in Myeloma Transplant Patients—A field study

Mar 01, 2021

Myeloma patients spend two to three weeks inside their hospital rooms during transplantation, which can lead to circadian disruption due to low light levels typically found indoors. We performed a pilot study to determine whether circadian-effective light could promote entrainment in myeloma patients. We hypothesized that an increase in circadian entrainment would lead to reduced cancer-related fatigue, depression, and sleep problems. Fifty-five participants were randomly assigned to two lighting interventions that used freestanding luminaires to deliver either circadian-effective light (n=27) or circadian-ineffective light (n=28) throughout the hospital room between 7am and 10am during every day of hospitalization. Results showed an increase in nocturnal melatonin levels and an improvement in sleep in those receiving the circadian-effective (active) intervention. The present results suggest that light can be used to help myeloma transplant patients maintain circadian entrainment while hospitalized. Design guidelines and implementation tips to increase circadian stimulus in hospital rooms are also discussed.

Mariana G. Figueiro, PhD (Lighting Research Center,Rensselaer Polytechnic,Icahn School of Medicine)
Allison Thayer, MS (Lighting Research Center,Rensselaer Polytechnic,Icahn School of Medicine)
The Academy Journal of the AIA Academy of Architecture for Health (AAH)
Published & professionally reviewed by: 
The American Institute of Architects (AIA)

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