The role of sleep in recovery following ischemic stroke: A review of human and animal data.

Duss, Simone B.; Seiler, Andrea; Schmidt, Markus H.; Pace, Marta; Adamantidis, Antoine; Müri, René M.; Bassetti, Claudio L. (2017). The role of sleep in recovery following ischemic stroke: A review of human and animal data. Neurobiology of sleep and circadian rhythms, 2, pp. 94-105. Elsevier 10.1016/j.nbscr.2016.11.003

Duss, 2017, The role of sleep in recovery following ischemic stroke.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works (CC-BY-NC-ND).

Download (610kB) | Preview

Despite advancements in understanding the pathophysiology of stroke and the state of the art in acute management of afflicted patients as well as in subsequent neurorehabilitation training, stroke remains the most common neurological cause of long-term disability in adulthood. To enhance stroke patients' independence and well-being it is necessary, therefore, to consider and develop new therapeutic strategies and approaches. We postulate that sleep might play a pivotal role in neurorehabilitation following stroke. Over the last two decades compelling evidence for a major function of sleep in neuroplasticity and neural network reorganization underlying learning and memory has evolved. Training and learning of new motor skills and knowledge can modulate the characteristics of subsequent sleep, which additionally can improve memory performance. While healthy sleep appears to support neuroplasticity resulting in improved learning and memory, disturbed sleep following stroke in animals and humans can impair stroke outcome. In addition, sleep disorders such as sleep disordered breathing, insomnia, and restless legs syndrome are frequent in stroke patients and associated with worse recovery outcomes. Studies investigating the evolution of post-stroke sleep changes suggest that these changes might also reflect neural network reorganization underlying functional recovery. Experimental and clinical studies provide evidence that pharmacological sleep promotion in rodents and treatment of sleep disorders in humans improves functional outcome following stroke. Taken together, there is accumulating evidence that sleep represents a "plasticity state" in the process of recovery following ischemic stroke. However, to test the key role of sleep and sleep disorders for stroke recovery and to better understand the underlying molecular mechanisms, experimental research and large-scale prospective studies in humans are necessary. The effects of hospital conditions, such as adjusting light conditions according to the patients' sleep-wake rhythms, or sleep promoting drugs and non-invasive brain stimulation to promote neuronal plasticity and recovery following stroke requires further investigation.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurology

UniBE Contributor:

Duss, Simone, Seiler, Andrea Barbara, Schmidt, Markus Helmut, Pace, Marta, Adamantidis, Antoine Roger, Müri, René Martin, Bassetti, Claudio L.A.


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Chantal Kottler

Date Deposited:

14 Jul 2020 16:15

Last Modified:

02 Mar 2023 23:33

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

EEG Ischemic stroke Neuroplasticity Neurorehabilitation Recovery Sleep architecture Sleep disorders




Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback