Family history of idiopathic REM behavior disorder a multicenter case-control study

Yves Dauvilliers, Ronald B. Postuma, Luigi Ferini-Strambi, Isabelle Arnulf, Birgit Högl, Raffaele Manni, Tomoyuki Miyamoto, Wolfgang Oertel, Maria Livia Fantini, Monica Puligheddu, Poul Jennum, Karel Sonka, Marco Zucconi, Smeranda Leu-Semenescu, Birgit Frauscher, Michele Terzaghi, Masayuki Miyamoto, Marcus Unger, Alex Desautels, Christina WolfsonAmélie Pelletier, Jacques Montplaisir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To compare the frequency of proxy-reported REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD) among relatives of patients with polysomnogram-diagnosed idiopathic RBD (iRBD) in comparison to controls using a large multicenter clinic-based cohort. Methods: A total of 316 patients with polysomnography- confirmed iRBD were recruited from 12 RBD study group centers, along with 316 controls matched on sex and age group. All subjects completed a self-administered questionnaire that collected proxy-reported information on family history of tremor, gait trouble, balance trouble, Parkinson disease, memory loss, and Alzheimer disease. The questionnaire also included a single question that asked about possible symptoms of RBD among first-degree relatives (siblings, parents, and children). Results: A positive family history of dream enactment was reported in 13.8% of iRBD cases compared to 4.8% of controls (odds ratio [OR] = 3.9, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.0-7.7). ORs were increased for both siblings (OR = 6.1, 95% CI 2.1-18.1) and parents (OR = 3.2, 95% CI 1.4-7.8). We found no significant difference in sex, current age (65.3 ± 10.2 vs 66.9 ± 10.2 years), or age at self-reported RBD onset (55.2 ± 11.7 vs 56.6 ± 15.1 years) in possible familial vs sporadic iRBD. No differences were found in family history of tremor, walking and balance troubles, Parkinson disease, memory loss, or Alzheimer disease. Conclusion: We found increased odds of proxy-reported family history of presumed RBD among individuals with confirmed iRBD. This suggests the possibility of a genetic contribution to RBD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2233-2235
Number of pages3
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - Jun 11 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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