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J Neurol Sci. 1998 Jan 8;153(2):192-202.

Disorders of excessive daytime sleepiness--an update.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Tel-Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, Israel.


Disorders of excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) constitute a major health hazard, since impaired alertness may lead to accidents and poor quality of life, and some of them are associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Many disorders of EDS are neurological diseases (e.g. narcolepsy and periodic limb movements in sleep, PLMS). The largest group of disorders causing EDS consists of sleep-related disturbances of breathing, where neuroregulatory mechanisms play a major role in pathophysiology. Many patients with neurodegenerative and neuromuscular diseases suffer from sleep disturbances associated with EDS. Therefore, neurologists must be acquainted with the differential diagnosis of EDS and the major categories of sleep disorders causing it. The present update focuses on major sleep disorders causing EDS, and approaches the topic from the neurologist's perspective. Rather than being an extensive review, this update includes recent data on epidemiology, pathophysiology, diagnosis and treatment of obstructive sleep apnea and related conditions (increased upper airway resistance syndrome, central sleep apnea), as well as of narcolepsy and PLMS. Also included are recent data concerning EDS in neurodegenerative (Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple system atrophy) and neuromuscular disorders.

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