What is Narcolepsy?

What is Narcolepsy?

Narcolepsy is a sleep disorder characterized by excessive sleepiness, sleep paralysis, hallucinations, and in some cases episodes of cataplexy (partial or total loss of muscle control, often triggered by a strong emotion such as laughter).

Epileptic sleep or Narcolepsy is about to sleep with drowsiness all the time and irregularly slept at various times Sometimes may have symptoms similar to sleep. (That is muscle weakness, dejected, etc.) while the mood changes Patients are always sleepy and no matter how much sleep they feel sleepy without proper treatment, the quality of life is greatly worsened. May fall asleep in inappropriate situations And dangerous, such as driving a car, operating the patient. At present, although there is no cure for this, but can provide treatment to patients with a normal quality of life.

Cause of disease

  • Still unclear This disease is a fault in the brain that controls sleep and wake. With insomnia while still awake Symptoms such as Always sleepy The limbs are weak while waking (ghost) seeing illusion during sleep
  • This disease is not a psychiatric disorder. Found that patients with this disease have a family history of this disease as well. Studies have shown that some patients have low levels of chemicals in the brain called hypocretin. Some researchers have suggested that the disease is caused by genetic abnormalities combined with certain external factors.

Symptoms of the disease

  1. Very sleepy Often the first symptom of this disease patient Patients will sleep in situations such as in the classroom, after meals, in cinemas while writing books. Or even while talking Short-term sleep can help to refresh.
  2. Cataplexy (sleep results in muscle weakness, dejected when mood changes, etc.)
  3. Sleep paralysis is a condition that can not move while awake (like a ghost). It is shocking but not dangerous.
  4. Hypnagogic hallucination (Hallucinating while going to sleep) hallucinating while going to sleep, may be seen as a monster or scary thing

Other symptoms of the disease

  1. Unconscious behavior While sleeping, may do activities such as driving, cooking food, which can be dangerous
  2. Can’t sleep at night. The brain can control sleep disorders, causing insomnia at night.
  3. Can not focus
  4. Headache
  5. Forgetful
  6. depress


Diagnosis of sleep apnea This can be done by examining the polysomnogram and the [multiple sleep latency test (MSLT)] the next morning following the sleep test. The patient must be evaluated as non-fatal disease before the sleep test. The MSLT will examine the patient with nap for about 20 minutes, 2 hours apart every 4-5 hours and record the results.

Treatment – Even if it still cannot be cured but can provide treatment to alleviate the symptoms

  1. By using drugs, the use of caffeine is often ineffective. Effective drugs are stimulants such as methylphenidate, amphetamine, modafinil
  2. Behavioral therapy such as
  3. Getting to sleep and wake up at regular intervals every day
  4. Take a nap during the day
  5. Be careful when doing activities that may be dangerous if symptoms occur, such as driving, cooking.
  6. Treatment of hypnosis (By using drugs such as venlafaxine)
  7. Factors that promote treatment

Provide knowledge and understanding about the disease to patients, family, friends, colleagues. If being a child, should notify the school as well.

Categories: Health

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