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Cephalalgia. 1997 Jun;17(4):492-8.

Prevalence of sleep disorders in childhood and adolescence with headache: a case-control study.

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Department of Developmental Neurology and Psychiatry, University of Rome La Sapienza, Italy.


Although a relationship between headache and sleep disturbances has been reported in adults, only few data have been available in children. Accordingly, we performed a survey to determine the prevalence of sleep disturbances in children with migraine and tension-type headache. A questionnaire of history and clinical data and of sleep disturbances was given to parents of 283 headache subjects (164 with migraine and 119 with tension-type headache). Results were compared to a normative group comparable for age and sex of 893 normal healthy subjects. Migraine subjects showed a higher prevalence of sleep disturbances during infancy as well as 3-month colic. In both headache groups, more parents had sleep disturbances and there was a higher occurrence of co-sleeping and napping. A high frequency of sleep disturbances involving sleep quality, night awakenings, nocturnal symptoms and daytime sleepiness was reported in headache children. No statistical differences were found in the prevalence of sleep disturbances between migraine and tension-type headache. However, the migraine group tended to have "disturbed sleep" more often with increased prevalence of nocturnal symptoms such as sleep breathing disorders and parasomnias. Our results give further support to an association between sleep and migraine that may have a common intrinsic origin.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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