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Biol Psychiatry. 2000 Dec 1;48(11):1081-7.

Laboratory sleep correlates of nightmare complaint in PTSD inpatients.

Author information

1
National Center for PTSD, Clinical Laboratory and Education Division, Veterans Administration Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, California, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Nightmares are rare in the sleep laboratory, even in patients with posttraumatic stress disorder for whom nightmare complaints are diagnostic. Nevertheless, it is possible that laboratory conditions do not preclude the observation of telltales-nightmare-related modifications of tonic sleep-given sufficiently large samples.

METHODS:

Sixty-three unmedicated, nonapneic Vietnam combat veterans undergoing inpatient treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder underwent polysomnographic testing and assessment of nightmare complaint.

RESULTS:

Trauma-related nightmare complaint, but not non-trauma-related complaint, was associated with increased wake-after-sleep-onset in the sleep laboratory. No relationships between nightmare complaint and rapid eye movement sleep architecture were observed.

CONCLUSIONS:

Increased wake-after-sleep-onset was specifically associated with trauma-related nightmare complaint, confirming data from other quarters suggesting they are both phenomenologically and functionally distinct from normal dreaming.

PMID:
11094141
DOI:
10.1016/s0006-3223(00)00917-3
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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