Sleep and wake disturbances following traumatic brain injury
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Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major health concern in industrialised countries. Sleep and wake disturbances are among the most persistent and disabling sequelae after TBI. Yet, despite the widespread complaints of post-TBI sleep and wake disturbances, studies on their etiology, pathophysiology, and treatments remain inconclusive. This narrative review aims to summarise the current state of knowledge regarding the nature of sleep and wake disturbances following TBI, both subjective and objective, spanning all levels of severity and phases post-injury. A second goal is to outline the various causes of post-TBI sleep-wake disturbances. Globally, although sleep-wake complaints are reported in all studies and across all levels of severity, consensus regarding the objective nature of these disturbances is not unanimous and varies widely across studies. In order to optimise recovery in TBI survivors, further studies are required to shed light on the complexity and heterogeneity of post-TBI sleep and wake disturbances, and to fully grasp the best timing and approach for intervention.
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