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Does sleep deprivation alter muscle, core and thermographic temperature?


Body temperature is a robust physiological of sleep-wake cycle marker and of thermal homeostasis under different environmental conditions.


The objective of this study was to verify the muscle, core and thermographic temperatures of the adults before and after nocturnal sleep deprivation.


Fourteen male adults (mean age of 24.36±3.67 years; mean BMI of 25.12± 2.14 kg/m²) were participated in the study. The body temperatures measurements were performed over two days (D1 and D2). An actigraph was used to verify the time awake and the absence of naps during the sleep deprivation protocol. The muscle, core and thermographic temperatures were recordings in ten moments (8:00, 11:00, 14:00, 17:00, 20:00 on D1 and D2) during the protocol. The muscle temperature (mT) were measured by Insulation Disk Method (IDisk) on the Braquial Triceps (mTBT), Trapezius (mTTR), and Vastus lateralis thigh (mTVL). The core temperature (CT) and skin temperature (Tt) were measured by rectal probe (10-12cm into the anus) and by thermographic camera (Thermovisor) respectively. The General Linear Model (GLM) was used to compare the three body temperatures before and after nocturnal sleep deprivation. The α-level for all analysis was set at 0.05.


We found there was a significant effect of time to the Tt (F=5.91, p<0.01, PES=0.18; OP=0.95), mTBT (F=7.49; p<0.01, PES=0.22, OP=0.98), mTTR (F=4.63, p=0.01, PES=0.15, OP=0.81), and mTVL (F=15.62, p<0.01, PES=0.37, OP=1.00) respectively. However, no significant differences were observed in the CT after the sleep deprivation (F=2.54, p=0.09, PES=0.09, OP=0.48). Therefore, there was an increase of muscle and thermographic temperatures after sleep deprivation (p<0.05).


The muscle and thermographic temperatures increased after nocturnal sleep deprivation. However, the core temperature was not influenced by sleep deprivation. In general, sleep-deprived people are tired and have increase the physical effort to stay awake and not falling asleep. As a physical effort result there is an increase skin vasodilatation and peripheral temperatures. Additionally, an elevated skin temperature while core temperature does not decrease should be an alarm to inform thermoregulatory systems about the desynchronization of thermoregulatory mechanisms.



Body temperature, Sleep deprivation, Circadian Rhythm.


Área Clínica


Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais - Minas Gerais - Brasil


Fernanda Veruska Narciso, Andressa Silva, Carlos Magno Amaral Costa, Adriana Neves Silva Carvalho, Valdênio Martins Brant, Maria Tereza Naves Agrello, Diego Alcântara Borba, Aline Ângela Silva Cruz, Samuel Penna Wanner, Marco Túlio de Mello