[Sleep Disorders and Autonomic Nervous System Dysfunction]

Brain Nerve. 2022 Mar;74(3):279-282. doi: 10.11477/mf.1416202024.
[Article in Japanese]


Parasympathetic nervous system activity dominates during non-rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, whereas the sympathetic nervous system is dominant during REM sleep. The balance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems reduces the heart rate and blood pressure during non-REM sleep and increases these parameters during REM sleep and wakefulness. Heart rate variability analysis, a non-invasive method of autonomic nervous system analysis, may be useful in screening for obstructive sleep apnea and also to predict orthostatic hypotension secondary to autonomic disturbances in patients with REM sleep behavior disorder.

MeSH terms

  • Autonomic Nervous System*
  • Heart Rate / physiology
  • Humans
  • REM Sleep Behavior Disorder* / diagnosis
  • Sleep / physiology
  • Sympathetic Nervous System / physiology
  • Wakefulness