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Acting Out Dreams While Asleep

Some people act out their dreams while asleep. They may punch, kick, yell or even fall out of bed. This sleep problem is a risk factor for some brain diseases. A landmark Parkinson's study is examining this connection. Now it needs you.

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What Is REM Sleep Behavior Disorder?

With REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD), people act out dreams while asleep. They may punch, kick or yell. Some may get up out of bed or fall on the floor.

What Is the RBD and Parkinson's Connection?

RBD is a risk factor for Parkinson's and other brain diseases. People diagnosed with Parkinson's can have RBD as a symptom. 

In normal sleep the brain "paralyzes" the body so it remains still. In Parkinson's disease, brain changes impact movement. Those same changes may turn off that paralysis so the body moves while asleep.

Read our Ask the MD blog post on RBD.

Watch our webinar on sleep issues. And download our sleep guide.

What Study Is Looking at RBD and Parkinson's?

The Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI) study is recruiting people with RBD. PPMI is a landmark study sponsored by The Michael J. Fox Foundation. It aims to better understand and measure Parkinson's disease, including before movement symptoms begin. This information could lead to new treatments. 

Through PPMI, scientists also could learn more about the biology and experience of RBD.

Get started in PPMI today.

“We certainly all share the desire to slow down symptoms and progression, and to be as resilient as possible in the face of neurological disease. I am hopeful that my participation in studies like PPMI can serve as my contribution to this vitally needed research and can hopefully over time lead to true scientifically proven cures and prevention strategies.”
Brian Duggan, 67, Mill Valley, CA Lives with RBD
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