Sleep problems and Alzheimer’s disease linked?

February 17th, 2012 - 12:22 am ICT by Aishwarya Bhatt  

New York, Feb 16 (THAINDIAN NEWS) A new study has linked sleep difficulties with Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers say staying awake in the night for hours affected the brain and increases the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Scientists from the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis led by Yo-El Ju, MD will report the study at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in New Orleans in April. The scientists indicated that further studies are necessary to fully understand the kind of relationship that exists between not sleeping and Alzheimer’s disease.

The researchers noted they studied signs of preclinical symptoms during the study. About 100 volunteers were recruited for the study. All the study subjects were aged between 45 and 80 years. All the participants were tested to determine their cognitive levels. It was determined that they all had levels considered normal before the start of the study.

The researchers gave the participants actigraph to monitor their sleep activities over a period of 14 days. The subjects were also asked questions to gather further details from them.

The researchers determined that those who woke up more than five times an hour were more likely to develop sleep disorder.

Ju said that, “Our study lays the groundwork for investigating whether manipulating sleep is a possible strategy in the prevention or slowing of Alzheimer’s disease.”

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