Objective: We evaluated the power of slow sleep spindles during sleep stage 2 to clarify their relationship with executive function, especially with attention, in children with attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Methods: Subjects were 21 children with ADHD and 18 aged-matched, typically developing children (TDC). ADHD subjects were divided into groups of only ADHD and ADHD + autism spectrum disorder (ASD). We employed the Continuous Performance Test (CPT) to measure attention. We focused on sleep spindle frequencies (12–14 Hz) in sleep stage 2 and performed a power spectral analysis using fast Fourier transform techniques and compared sleep spindles with the variability of reaction time in CPT. Results: In the CPT, reaction variabilities in ADHD and ADHD + ASD significantly differed from those in TDC. Twelve-hertz spindles were mainly distributed in the frontal pole and frontal area and 14-Hz spindles in the central area. The ratio of 12-Hz frontal spindle power was higher in ADHD than in TDC, especially in ADHD + ASD. Significant correlation between the ratio of 12-Hz spindles and reaction time variability was observed. Conclusions: Twelve-hertz frontal spindle EEG activity may have positive associations with sustained attention function. Slow frontal spindles may be useful as a biomarker of inattention in children with ADHD.
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