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Since the 19th century, cases of pathological yawning have occasionally been published in medical journals. In this issue of J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry, Singer et al1 present the first study to focus specifically on yawning during acute stroke affecting the middle cerebral artery territory (see page 1253).
None of seven patients suffering from abnormal repetitive yawning had diencephalic lesions. Classically, yawning is thought to originate in archaic brain structures common to all vertebrates. It appears to be …
Competing interests: None.