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About the SleepWell Lab and Activities

Working to prevent chronic conditions and improve health and wellness by helping them sleep better.

At the Sleep, Health, and Wellness (SleepWell) lab, our vision is to prevent chronic conditions and improve people’s health and wellness by helping them sleep better. Our lab consists of students, researchers, and collaborators who seek to understand how sleep impacts function, learning, and overall health in adults with and without neurological conditions. We investigate how behavioral interventions to enhance sleep may prevent or delay the onset of chronic conditions and consider the interrelationship between sleep and other factors such as fatigue, cognition and pain.

Our work includes the use of mobile technology to study sleep/wake behaviors and collaboration with a sleep laboratory for sleep studies, also known as polysomnography. We focus on the use of non-pharmacological interventions such as exercise and cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) to improve sleep quality in a variety of populations, including older adults and people with multiple sclerosis, diabetes or chronic pain.

Lab Team

Lab director

Catherine F. Siengsukon, PT, PhD
Associate Professor

Lab team members

  • Eryen Nelson, study coordinator
  • Cierra Williams, research assistant
  • Karen Boch, Ph.D. student
  • Becca Ludwig, Ph.D. student
  • Amy Berkley, post-doc
  • Leslie Lesuer, DPT student

Collaborators

We work closely with partners at KU Medical Center and beyond.

Research Funding

Primary Prevention of Alzheimer's disease: Examining the effects of cognitive behavioral therapy on cognitive function and amyloid-beta in older adults with symptoms of insomnia
National Institute on Aging, U.S. National Institutes of Health
Siengsukon (PI)
2/1/2019-11/30/2023
Major Goal: To compare the efficacy of CBT-I on improving cognitive function in older adults with symptoms of insomnia, determine the association between change in sleep measures and change in cognitive function, and examine the efficacy of CBT-I on reducing the rate of Aβ deposition in older adults with symptoms of insomnia

Development of a Group Telehealth Obesity Intervention for Patients with MS

National MS Society

Bruce (PI); Siengsukon (Co-I)

10/1/2019-9/30/23

Major Goal: To examine the efficacy of a comprehensive behavioral weight loss intervention for patients with multiple sclerosis

Androgen Deprivation and Sleep Disturbance: Remote Assessment and Intervention

KU Cancer Center Pilot Grant Myers (PI) 7/01/2010-6/30/2021

Myers (PI); Siengsukon (Co-I)

Major Goal: 1) determine the feasibility of remotely assessing participants’ fitness, physical activity, cognitive function, and sleep quality, 2) remotely deliver and oversee a guided telehealth CBT-I intervention (teleCBT-I) to improve sleep quality, and 3) garner participants’ feedback and recommendations for refinement of the teleCBT-I content.

Examining the efficacy of CBT-I to improve sleep quality, fatigue, and health-related quality of in individuals with multiple sclerosis
Frontiers Pilot and Collaborative Studies Funding Program (UL1 TR000001, formerly UL1RR033179)
Siengsukon (PI)
07/01/2017-66/30/2018
Major Goal: To examine the efficacy of CBT-I on sleep quality, fatigue, and health-related quality of life in individuals with multiple sclerosis.

Assessing the Feasibility of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia in Individuals with MS with Symptoms of Insomnia
National Multiple Sclerosis Society Pilot Grant
Siengsukon (PI)
11/01/2018-10/1/2019
Major Goal: To examine the feasibility of using CBT-I to address insomnia symptoms individuals with multiple sclerosis.

The Effects of Aerobic Exercise on Cognitive Function and Sleep Quality in Individuals with MS
National Multiple Sclerosis Society Pilot Grant (PP2068)
Siengsukon (PI)
10/01/2013-09/30/2014
Major Goal: To assess the effects of an aerobic exercise program on the cognitive function and sleep quality in people with MS.

The effects of aerobic exercise on daytime sleepiness and speed of information processing in individuals with multiple sclerosis.
Frontiers Pilot and Collaborative Studies Funding Program (UL1 TR000001, formerly UL1RR033179)
Siengsukon (PI)
03/01/2013-02/28/2014
Major Goal: To assess the effects of an aerobic exercise program on daytime sleepiness and speed of information processing in people with MS.

The role of sleep in learning a functional motor task
Kansas Partners in Progress Foundation
Siengsukon (PI)
08/01/2011-08/31/2013
Major Goal: to determine the role of sleep in learning a functional motor task in young, middle-aged, and older adults.

Sleep to learn after stroke: Examining the role of sleep parameters and cognition in motor skill learning in individuals with stroke
American Heart Association National Scientist Development Grant
Siengsukon (PI)
07/01/2009-06/30/2013
Major Goal: To determine which sleep parameters are associated with sleep-dependent motor learning and how cognition influence sleep-dependent motor learning in individuals with stroke and controls.

KU School of Health Professions

Physical Therapy, Rehabilitation Science, and Athletic Training
University of Kansas Medical Center
Mail Stop 2002
3901 Rainbow Blvd.
Kansas City, KS 66160
ptrs@kumc.edu

913-588-6799