Researchers say they've documented at least eight cases in which people started sleepwalking at the same time their hyperthyroidism emerged. Although the exact relationship between hyperthyroidism and sleepwalking is unclear, they say the results suggest that there is a cause-and-effect relationship between the two conditions.
Hyperthyroidism May Lead to Sleepwalking
In the study, which appears in a recent issue of Endocrine Practice, researchers describe eight cases in which patients reported starting to sleepwalk at the same time their hyperthyroidism was diagnosed.
In each case, researchers say the sleepwalking disappeared once the hyperthyroidism was successfully treated. In addition, two of the patients began sleepwalking again after their hyperthyroidism became poorly controlled because of failure to take their medications as prescribed.
Researchers say none of the patients had a family history of sleepwalking or night terrors, which are commonly associated with other causes of sleepwalking.
But they say more research is needed to better understand and confirm this unusual potential side effect of hyperthyroidism and determine its prevalence among people with hyperthyroidism.