Identification of Prodromal Neurodegeneration in Serotonergic-Induced REM sleep Behavior Disorder


This research is being completed to examine the cells, brain imaging, and speech in individuals with REM Sleep Behavior Disorder who are taking serotonergic medications such as Citalopram, Escitalopram, Fluoxetine, Fluvoxamine, Paroxetine and Sertraline. The purpose of examining these is to try and see if we can predict signs of Dementia with Lewy bodies (a progressive form of dementia with an increase in decline of thinking, reasoning, and other functions). This may benefit others by enabling us to diagnose Dementia with Lewy Bodies sooner rather than later.

I'm interested

Male or Female
18 years and over
This study is also accepting healthy volunteers
Inclusion Criteria:

• 18 to 75 years old
• diagnosis of polysomnogram-confirmed RBD (e.g. narcolepsy) with history of dream enactment or clear dream enactment visualized on video from polysomnogram
• dream enactment began shortly after (less than 2 months) starting a serotonergic antidepressant medication
• for Healthy Volunteers: on serotonergic medication for at least 6 months without history of dream enactment
• the following serotonergic medications are included for both groups: Citalopram, Escitalopram, Fluoxetine, Fluvoxamine, Paroxetine, and Sertraline
Exclusion Criteria:

• Parkinsons disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, Multiple System Atrophy, Pure Autonomic Failure, Alzheimers disease, other diagnosed neurodegenerative disorder, or other known cause of RBD (e.g. narcolepsy)
• untreated obstructive sleep apnea, obesity hypoventilation, central sleep apnea or other sleep disordered breathing
• unable to have a MRI scan
• women who are pregnant
• for Healthy Volunteers: same exclusion criteria as those with 5-HT RBD group, plus history of dream enactment, or increased REM motor tone

Rare Diseases, Brain & Nervous System

dream enactment, Serotonergic REM sleep behavior

Joy Schmidt -
Michael Howell