Affordable Access

Parkinson's disease and the influence of the forebrain dopaminergic system on dreaming

University of Cape Town
Publication Date
  • Research Psychology [Neuropsychology]
  • Dopamine
  • Parkinson'S Disease
  • Dreaming
  • Medicine


The purpose of the study was to investigate a hypothesis proposed by Solms (2000) to the effect that a forebrain dopaminergic mechanism is the final common path to dreaming. It was hypothesised that sufferers of Parkinson's disease (PO) would have decreased intensity and frequency of dreams - that is that PO disease may lead to cessation or reduced dreaming, reduced duration of dreams, reduced narrative complexity of dream and a change in dream emotion and that this will further decrease with the duration of the disease irrespective of the medication that the patient is taking. Self-report questionnaires (N=40) and the Most Recent Dream Report (Oomhoff, 1996) was used for assessment. PO patients were found to have shorter as well as more pleasant dreams. A correlation (p < .05) was found in the PO sample between duration of illness and emotional quality of dreams and dream duration. The specific hypothesis of the study was not fully supported. However, the findings do support the suggestion that dreaming is generated by the mesocortical-mesolimbic dopamine system.

There are no comments yet on this publication. Be the first to share your thoughts.