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Narcolepsy overview

Updated: April 03, 2010

Narcolepsy is a chronic disorder characterized by recurrent brief episodes of uncontrollable drowsiness.

The etiology is unknown, however genetic predisposition, aberrant neurophysiological mechanisms of REM have been postulated.

Diagnosis

4 criteria are required for the diagnosis of narcolepsy: sleep attacks, cataplexy, sleep paralysis, hypnagogic states.

Treatment

Treatment is of limited value; methylphenidate, amphetamines, MAO inhibitors.


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