Nacrolepsy : Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Nacrolepsy : Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment


Narcolepsy is the second one main purpose of immoderate daytime sleepiness (after obstructive sleep apnea). Chronic sleepiness and sleep attacks are the hallmarks of this situation. The sleepiness has been compared to the feeling of looking to stay awake after no longer sleeping for two or three days. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Nacrolepsy : Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

  • Narcolepsy  is a neurological issue that
    influences the control of sleep and wakefulness.
    It is 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).
  • Narcolepsy occurs equally in men and women and is
    thought to affect roughly 1 in 2,000 people
  • In a typical sleep cycle, people enter the early
    stages of sleep followed by deeper sleep stages
    and ultimately (after about 90 minutes) rapid eye
    movement (REM) sleep.

  • But in case of nacrolepsy, REM sleep occurs
    almost immediately in the sleep cycle, as well as
    periodically during the waking hours. It is in
    REM sleep that make us experience dreams and
    muscle paralysis, which are the common symptoms
    of nacroplasy.
  • It usually occurs between the ages of 15 and 25,
    but it can become apparent at any age. In many
    cases, narcolepsy is undiagnosed and, therefore,

Symptoms of nacrolepsy
  • There may certain symptoms which can indicate
    nacrolepsy. It may include
  • Excessive Daytime Sleepiness (EDS)-EDS is the
    most common symptom of narcolepsy and usually the
    first symptom to appear (usually between the ages
    of 10-20 years old). EDS is portrayed by a
    chronic persistence of feeling sleepy and
    involuntary episodes of falling asleep without
  • Sleep paralysis-Sleep paralysis is the inability
    to move or speak where one is falling asleep or
    waking up. During sleep paralysis the person is
    conscious of the surrounding, but can't move as
    the body is still in REM sleep.

Symptoms of nacrolepsy
  • Cataplexy-Cataplexy is very similar to sleep
    paralysis in that there is an involuntary
    inability to move muscles or speak, but unlike of
    sleep paralysis it can occur in any time of the
  • Hallucinations- Patients of nacrolepsy can
    experience hallucinations during waking up or
    during sleep onset in day. It can be vivid and
    often frightening.
  • Disturbed nocturnal sleep-Person suffering from
    nacroplasy may have difficult remaining asleep in
    night as they have difficult remaining awake in

Causes of nacrolepy
  • Though the causes of nacrolepsy is not
    completely known. But there be some thought
    causes, which include
  • Autoimmune disorders- The occurrence of cataplexy
    is most often due to the the loss of brain cells
    that produce hypocretin. Although the reason for
    this cell loss is unknown, it appears to be
    linked to abnormalities in the immune system.
    Body's own immune system attacks the hypocretin
    brain cells which may be associated with other
    enviormental factors.
  • Family history- Nacroplasy is not a inherited
    disease. But in 10 cases the risk may increase
    due to family history.
  • Brain injuries- Rarely, narcolepsy results from
    traumatic injury to parts of the brain that
    regulate wakefulness and REM sleep or from tumors
    and other diseases in the same regions.

Treatment of nacrolepsy
  • Stimulants-Drugs used to stimulate the central
    nervous system to help people stay awake, and
    certain amphetamine-like drugs are the most
    common stimulants given.
  • Antidepressants-selective serotonin reuptake
    inhibitors (SSRI's) and serotonin and
    norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRI's) have
    been used to suppress REM sleep, alleviate
    cataplexy and sleep paralysis and hallucinations.
  • Sodium Oxybate-Sodium oxybate is a strong
    sedative that is administered at night and helps
    relieve symptoms of cataplexy and EDS. But,
    sodium oxybate can have serious side effects so
    concern of doctor is strictly recommended.
  • Xyrem- It is a new medicine helps people with
    narcolepsy get a better night's sleep, allowing
    them to be less sleepy during the day.

Diagnosis of nacrolepsy
  • A preliminary study of the patient is done
    regarding the symptoms of EDS and cataplexy. But
    certain further diagnosis may be done, which
  • Polysomnogram (PSG)-A polysomnogram is an
    overnight sleep study in which patients are
    hooked up to a variety of equipment that record
    brain activity, eye movements, heart rate, blood
    pressure, oxygen levels, body movement, and more.
    Certain test is used to document any
    abnormalities in patients sleep cycle.
  • Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT)-A MSLT is a
    sleep study that is performed during the day to
    measure the tendency to fall asleep during the
    day and how rapidly a patient fall asleep. MSLT's
    generally follow a Polysomnogram and record
    whether the patient fall asleep during the test,
    and if so, which stages of sleep you enter

  • Nacrolepsy cannot be treated completely, use of
    drugs and following certain living pattern can
    help the patient to reduce symptoms, and control
    daytime sleep. Support from family and near ones
    may be the most effective treatment.

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