Epilepsy and sleep: reciprocal interactions Volume 16, issue 3, Juillet-Août-Septembre 2004


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Unité médico‐chirurgicale de l’épilepsie, hôpital Gui de Chauliac, 80, avenue Fliche, 34295 Montpellier Cedex 05

Relationships between sleep and epilepsy are known since ancient time and stay an important consideration in this disease. Sleep have a dual property in epilepsy: it could be protective and precipiting. In function of the epilepsy syndrome one of this dual aspect of sleep is more pronounced, for interictal abnormalities and\or ictal events. Epilepsy and antiepileptic drugs have effect on sleep organisation and its architecture. Some sleep disease could interfere with epilepsy and could provoke difficulties of diagnosis. These associated pathologies must be known and are principally constituted by parasomnia or sleep apnea syndrome. All these points must be evoked when studying an epilepsy because this relationship between sleep and epilepsy is useful and helps us to classify, to explore, to diagnose and to ameliorate treatment of epilepsy. After general considerations we show in this paper why it is interesting to study sleep in epilepsy. At the end the methodology to use and how to process according to epileptic syndrome and the presented problems are indicated.