Neuroimaging techniques can be used to predict if people with REM sleep disorder will develop neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, according to a study published in Lancet Neurology.
Researchers from the Institut d’Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer and the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona enrolled 43 patients with REM sleep disturbances and conducted neuroimaging tests such as 123I-FP-CIT SPECT and transcranial ultrasound.
The results showed that more than 60% of patients who did not have normal neuroimaging test results developed neurological disorders after two and a half years.
Patients with normal neuroimaging test results had not developed neurological disorders after two and a half years of follow-up.
A previous study conducted by the research team showed that REM sleep disturbances can be an early marker of neurological disorders.