Night sweats

Night sweats is the occurrence of excessive sweating during sleep. The person may or may not also perspire excessively while awake.

Night sweats
Other namesSleep sweats, nocturnal hyperhidrosis
SpecialtyInfectious disease, oncology

One of the most common causes of night sweats in women over 40 is the hormonal changes related to menopause and perimenopause.[1] This is a very common occurrence during the menopausal transition years.

While night sweats might be relatively harmless, it can also be a sign of a serious underlying disease. It is important to distinguish night sweats due to medical causes from those that occur simply because the sleep environment is too warm, either because the bedroom is unusually hot or because there are too many covers on the bed. Night sweats caused by a medical condition or infection can be described as "severe hot flashes occurring at night that can drench sleepwear and sheets, which are not related to the environment".[2] Some of the underlying medical conditions and infections that cause these severe night sweats can be life-threatening and should promptly be investigated by a medical practitioner.

Associated conditions

The condition may be a sign of various disease states, including but not exclusive to the following:


  1. T. F. Kruger; M. H. Botha (5 September 2008). Clinical Gynaecology. Juta and Company Ltd. pp. 333–. ISBN 978-0-7021-7305-9. Retrieved 16 June 2011.
  2. "Night Sweats Causes, Treatment Information". MedicineNet. 20 March 2012. Retrieved 15 August 2012.
  3. Viera, Anthony J.; Bond, Michael M.; Yates, Scott W. (1 March 2003). "Diagnosing Night Sweats". American Family Physician. 67 (5): 1019–1024. Retrieved 13 June 2012.
  4. Jonathan E. Teitelbaum; Kathleen O. DeAntonis; Scott Kahan (1 June 2004). In a page: Pediatric signs & symptoms. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. pp. 6–. ISBN 978-1-4051-0427-2. Retrieved 23 June 2011.
  5. Tao Le; Vikas Bhushan (13 July 2006). First Aid for the USMLE Step 2 CS. McGraw-Hill Professional. pp. 74–. ISBN 978-0-07-147058-2. Retrieved 23 June 2011.
  6. "Night sweats : Causes". Mayo Clinic. 22 March 2011. Retrieved 10 May 2012.
  7. Deecher, D. C.; K. Dorries (2007). "Understanding the pathophysiology of vasomotor symptoms (hot flushes and night sweats) that occur in perimenopause, menopause, and postmenopause life stages". Archives of Women's Mental Health. 10 (6): 247–257. doi:10.1007/s00737-007-0209-5. PMID 18074100. Retrieved 5 December 2011.

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