Dynamics of REM sleep in narcolepsy

A. J. Spielman, J. M. Adler, P. B. Glovinsky, M. R. Pressman, M. J. Thorpy, S. J. Ellman, K. D. Ackerman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The discovery of sleep onset REM periods (SOREMPs) in narcolepsy first suggested the important role of REM sleep in the disorder. We have conducted a series of studies exploring factors that affected the onset and termination of REM sleep in narcolepsy. Following a preliminary study of REM sleep deprivation, we compared the sleep onset response of narcoleptic and normal subjects to awakenings at REM sleep onsets and awakenings during NREM sleep. In addition, we have investigated the relationship of these awakenings to daytime sleepiness. We have demonstrated that an index of the REM sleep process predicts the sleepiness of both normal and narcoleptic subjects. The finding on increased frequency of SOREMPs following both REM and NREM sleep awakenings in the narcoleptic patient suggests that accelerated triggering and inertia of the REM sleep process are pathophysiological mechanisms of the disorder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-182
Number of pages8
Issue number1 PART II
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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