Factors that predispose, prime and precipitate NREM parasomnias in adults: Clinical and forensic implications
Sleepwalking and related disorders are the result of factors that predispose, prime and precipitate episodes. In the absence of one or more of these factors sleepwalking is unlikely to occur. Predisposition to sleepwalking is based on genetic susceptibility and has a familial pattern. Priming factors include conditions and substances that increase slow wave sleep (SWS) or make arousal from sleep more difficult. These factors include sleep deprivation, alcohol, medications, situational stress and fever among others. The patient with a genetic predisposition to sleepwalking and with priming factors still requires a precipitating factor or trigger to set the sleepwalking episode in motion.
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