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Aging Clin Exp Res. 2016 Oct;28(5):951-7. doi: 10.1007/s40520-015-0382-8. Epub 2015 May 29.

Rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder in patients with probable Alzheimer's disease.

Author information

1
Department of Geriatric Neurology, Sleep Medicine Research Center, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Fuxing Road 28, Beijing, 100853, People's Republic of China.
2
Department of Neurology, Tianjin Huanhu Hospital, Tianjin, 300060, China.
3
Sleep Assessment Unit, Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, SAR, Hong Kong, China.
4
Brainnetome Center, Institute of Automation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100190, China.
5
Department of Neurology, Hainan Branch of Chinese PLA General Hospital, Hainan, 572014, China.
6
Department of Radiology, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Beijing, 100853, China.
7
Department of Geriatric Neurology, Sleep Medicine Research Center, Chinese PLA General Hospital, Fuxing Road 28, Beijing, 100853, People's Republic of China. zhangxi@301hospital.com.cn.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND AIMS:

Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behavior disorder (RBD) is commonly associated with neurodegenerative disorders characterized by α-synuclein deposition, including Parkinson's disease, multiple system atrophy, and Lewy body dementia. However, this tendency in tauopathy-mediated diseases is rare and only sporadically reported. We systematically illustrate the occurrence of RBD and sleep features among a cohort of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), a non-synucleinopathy.

METHODS:

We recruited 105 clinically probable AD patients. Fifteen clinically probable AD patients with suspected RBD underwent a video-polysomnography (vPSG) examination.

RESULTS:

Five patients with probable AD exhibited RBD. One of the patients performed repeated touching of the head and the face with his hands and flailed his arms. Three patients exhibited hand twisting, exploring, prominent limb kicking, and jerking. The fifth patient exhibited all of the characteristics of RBD (he recalled a dream about fighting animals), and his wife was awakened by his screaming. Of these five patients, one patient took the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor drug donepezil. The patients with AD + RBD demonstrated increases in both tonic and phasic electromyography activity during REM sleep, but sleep architecture did not differ between the AD + RBD and AD-alone groups.

CONCLUSION:

RBD can occur in patients with AD. The occurrence of RBD does not change the sleep architecture of AD patients.

KEYWORDS:

Alzheimer’s disease; REM sleep behavior disorder; REM sleep without atonia; Video-polysomnography

PMID:
26022447
DOI:
10.1007/s40520-015-0382-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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