MDS is a bone marrow failure disorder
Sleep and Insomnia

Wellness begins with a good night’s rest, which can be challenging when diagnosed with MDS. It may be reassuring to know that you are not alone in having a difficult time sleeping. One-third to one-half of cancer patients experience changes in their sleep patterns. Difficulty sleeping has been linked to physical illness, pain, hospitalization, medications, and the psychological impact of being diagnosed with cancer. Poor sleep interferes with your ability to function well and increases the likelihood of depression and anxiety. Sleep deprived states have also been linked with decreased pain tolerance.

How much sleep is enough? The general rule of thumb is 7-9 hours of sleep per night, according to the National Sleep Foundation. However, like exercise, sleep needs are individual. One person may function well with 7 hours of sleep, while another may need 10 hours.

Things you can do:

  1. Keep a log of symptoms that you are concerned about. These can be tracked in the MDS Manager Symptom Tracker.  Discuss these with your health care team.
  2. Keep all your appointments as scheduled.
  3. Discuss problems sleeping with the health care team. Medications for anxiety, depression, and insomnia may be necessary.
  4. If sleep is altered by symptoms related to MDS, discuss these symptoms with the health care team.
  5. Keep regular bedtime and awakening hours.
  6. Avoid stimulants and caffeine 2 hours prior to bedtime.
  7. Exercise for 30 minutes three to five times per week.
  8. Limit day time napping to 30 minutes.
  9. Spend 30 minutes to an hour of quiet time prior to going to bed.

Additional Resources:

MDS Foundation: Sleep

American Cancer Society:  Sleep Problems

Cancer Care: Sleep

Oncolink:   Sleep disturbances

Review answers to commonly asked questions or get answers to your questions from an MDS expert