Background: Insomnia symptoms are common in the population and have negative psychosocial and functional sequelae. There are no prospective studies of the course of such symptoms and their impact, if any, in stroke survivors. This prospective cohort study investigated insomnia after stroke in working-age adults and evaluated its impact on psychological and functional outcomes over the subsequent year. Methods: We prospectively recruited 441 young (<65 years) consecutive stroke survivors from 20 public hospitals in the New South Wales Stroke Service network. Participants were assessed by self-report and interview at 28 days, 6 months, and 12 months after stroke. Insomnia was defined using a common epidemiological measure of sleep disturbance and daytime consequences. Depression, anxiety, disability, and return to work were assessed through standardized measures. Results: The point prevalence of insomnia at each time point in the year after stroke was stable at 30–37% and more common in females. Fifty-eight (16%) of all participants reported “chronic” insomnia, with symptoms at both baseline and 6 months later. At 12 months, this group was more likely to be depressed (OR 6.75, 95% CI 2.78–16.4), anxious (OR 3.31, 95% CI 1.54–7.09), disabled (OR 3.60, 95% CI 2.07–6.25), and not have returned to work, compared to those without insomnia over the same period. Conclusions: Chronic insomnia has a negative effect on disability and return to work 1 year after stroke even after adjusting for demographic, psychiatric, and disability factors. Identifying and appropriately targeting insomnia through known effective treatments may improve functional outcomes after stroke.

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