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The Impact of Deep Brain Stimulation on Sleep in Parkinson's Disease: An update.



Parkinson's disease (PD) can have a significant impact on sleep. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is an effective treatment for motor features of PD, but less is understood about the impact DBS may have on sleep architecture and various sleep issues commonly seen in PD.


To review the impact of DBS on various sleep issues in PD.


We reviewed the literature regarding the impact of DBS on sleep patterns, nocturnal motor and non-motor symptoms, and sleep disorders in PD.


Objective sleep measures on polysomnography (PSG), including sleep latency and wake after sleep onset improve after subthalamic nucleus (STN) and globus pallidus interna (GPi) DBS. Subjective sleep measures, nocturnal motor symptoms, and some non-motor symptoms (nocturia) also may improve. Current evidence suggests STN DBS has no impact on Rapid Eye Movement Behavior Disorder (RBD), while STN DBS may improve symptoms of Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS). There are no studies that have evaluated the impact of GPi DBS on RBD, while it is unclear if GPi has an effect on RLS in PD.


DBS therapy at either site appears to improve objective and subjective sleep parameters in patients with PD. Most likely, the improvement of motor and some non-motor nocturnal symptoms leads to an increase in total sleep time by up to an hour, as well as reduction of sleep fragmentation. DBS most likely has no impact on RBD, while there is evidence that STN DBS appears to help reduce RLS severity. Further studies are needed.

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