What are night sweats?

Night sweats are episodes of profuse sweating that occur at night even when your bedroom is not that hot.

Menopause Symptoms Spotlight

Night sweats may accompany the hot flashes characteristic of the menopausal transition, or they may be a sign of serious diseases. Night sweats and fevers can be caused by a number of conditions, including common infections such as the flu, severe illnesses such as human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS), and cancers such as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Night sweats can also be a symptom of hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid), endocarditis (infection of the heart lining), and hepatitis (inflammation of the liver).

In some cases, night sweats may simply be due to having too many blankets or a reaction to certain medications. Depending on the cause, night sweats may occur one time, several times, or nightly, and they may be accompanied by other symptoms, including fever, rapid breathing, and sleep disturbances.

In some cases, night sweats may occur with other symptoms that might indicate a serious condition. Seek prompt medical care if you have any of the following symptoms: persistent chills, coughing up blood (hemoptysis), difficulty breathing or rapid breathing, fever, unexplained weight loss, or fatigue and loss of appetite that continue for several days.

If your night sweats are persistent or cause you concern, seek prompt medical care.


What other symptoms might occur with night sweats?

Night sweats may accompany other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Symptoms that frequently affect sleep may involve a number of body systems.... Read more about night sweatssymptoms


What causes night sweats?

Night sweats can result from a number of different causes. Having too many blankets on the bed and menopause are common causes. In other cases, night sweats may be due to medical conditions. For instance, influenza, HIV/AIDS, hepatitis (liver inflammation), and endocarditis (infection of the heart lining) are all associated with night sweats. In addition, severe illnesses, such as cancer and tuberculosis, can lead to sweating at night.... Read more about night sweatscauses

Medical Reviewer: All content has been reviewed by board-certified physicians under the direction of Rich Klasco, M.D., FACEP. Last Annual Review Date: May 2, 2011 Copyright: © Copyright 2011 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Infections and Contagious Diseases

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