Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Background/aim: This study aimed to analyze the serum melatonin levels and changes in sleep patterns in pediatric patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Materials and methods: This study was designed as a descriptive, cross-sectional study. Serum melatonin levels and sleep parameters of children with the diagnosis of COVID-19 who had mild and moderate disease (i.e., COVID-19 group) were compared with those of children admitted with non-COVID-19 nonspecific upper respiratory tract infection (i.e., control group). The sleep disturbance scale for children (SDSC) questionnaire was applied to the participants' primary caregivers to analyze their sleep patterns at present and six months before symptom onset and to investigate the impact of COVID-19 on sleep patterns. Results: The entire study cohort consisted of 106 patients. The COVID-19 group included 80 patients, while the control group consisted of 26 patients. The mean serum melatonin levels were 136.72 pg/mL and 172.63 pg/mL in the COVID-19 and control groups, respectively (p = 0.16). There was no significant difference between the groups in terms of 6 subcategories of the SDSC questionnaire regarding the present time and 6 months before symptom onset. The total SDSC scores were also similar in two different evaluation time points described above (p = 0.99). Conclusions: We conclude that COVID-19 did not impact the sleep parameters of children. Serum melatonin levels of all patients were higher than the reference range; however, they were higher in the non-COVID-19 patient group than the COVID-19 group. Since serum melatonin levels were higher than the reference values in children with COVID-19, and this disease is significantly less morbid in children, melatonin may have protective effects against COVID-19.


Melatonin, sleep, pediatric, COVID-19, children

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