Actigraphy refers to the assessment of activity patterns by devices typically placed on the wrist or ankle that record body movement, which is interpreted by computer algorithms as periods of sleep (absence of activity) and wake (activity).
Actigraphy devices are typically worn continuously for at least 24 hours. Activity is usually recorded for a period of three days to two weeks. The activity monitors may be placed on the ankle for the assessment of restless legs syndrome, or on the trunk to record movement in infants. Proprietary software is then used to calculate periods of sleep based on the absence of detectable movement, along with movement-related level of activity and periods of wake. In addition to providing graphic depiction of the activity pattern, device-specific software may analyze and report a variety of sleep parameters including sleep onset, sleep offset, sleep latency, total sleep duration, and wake after sleep onset. For clinical applications, actigraphy is being evaluated as a measure of sleep-wake cycles in sleep disorders, including insomnia and circadian rhythm sleep disorders.
Actigraphy, as a technique to record and analyze body movement, including but not limited to, its use in the evaluation of sleep disorders, is considered investigational.
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Although actigraphy appears to provide reliable measures of sleep onset and wake time in some patient populations, the clinical utility of actigraphy over the less expensive sleep diary has not been demonstrated. Moreover, evidence indicates that actigraphy does not provide a reliable measure of sleep efficiency in clinical populations. This policy only addresses actigraphy as a stand-alone test. When performed as a component of portable home sleep testing, actigraphy should not be reported separately.
American Academy of Sleep Medicine. (2017, February). Clinical practice guideline for the pharmacologic treatment of chronic insomnia in adults: an American Academy of Sleep Medicine practice guideline. Retrieved September 7, 2017 from http://www.aasmnet.org/Resources/clinicalguidelines/040515.pdf.
American Academy of Sleep Medicine. (2018, July). Use of actigraphy for the evaluation of sleep disorders and circadian rhythm sleep-wake disorders: An American Academy of Sleep Medicine Clinical Practice. Retrieved August 14, 2018 from http://jcsm.aasm.org/ViewAbstract.aspx?pid=31329.
Blake, M.J., Sheeber, L.B., Youssef, G.J., Raniti, M.B., & Allen, N.B. (2017). Systematic review and meta-analysis of adolescent cognitive-behavioral sleep interventions. Clinical Child Family Psychology Review, 20 (3), 227-249. (Level 1 evidence)
BlueCross BlueShield Association. Medical Policy Reference Manual. (6:2018). Actigraphy (2.01.73). Retrieved August 14, 2018 from BlueWeb. (21 articles and/or guidelines reviewed)
CMS.gov: Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Palmetto GBA. (2018, April). Polysomnography (LCD L36593). Retrieved August 14, 2018 from www.cms.gov.
Louter, M., Arends, J., Bloem, B., & Overeem, S. (2014). Actigraphy as a diagnostic aid for REM sleep behavior disorder in Parkinson’s disease. BioMed Central Neurology, 14 (76), 1-8. (Level 4 evidence)
Plante, D. (2014). Leg actigraphy to quantify periodic limb movements of sleep: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Sleep Medicine Reviews, 18 (5), 425-434. Abstract retrieved September 7, 2017 from PubMed database.
Tonetti, L., Scher, A., Atun-Einy, O., Samuel, M., Boreggiani, M., & Natale, V. (2016). Actigraphic motor activity during sleep from infancy to adulthood. Chronobiology International Journal, 2016, Aug, 1-8. Abstract retrieved September 26, 2016 from PubMed database.
U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (1985). Center for Devices and Radiological Health. 510(k) Premarket Notification Database. K854030. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from http://www.accessdata.fda.gov.
U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (2004). Center for Devices and Radiological Health. 510(k) Premarket Notification Database. K040554. Retrieved September 26, 2016 from http://www.accessdata.fda.gov.
ORIGINAL EFFECTIVE DATE: 1/14/2006
MOST RECENT REVIEW DATE: 11/8/2018
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