Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Diagnosing Narcolepsy

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By Robert S. Zones

The look of narcolepsy associated symptoms may possibly take many years prior to they are experienced and diagnosed on account of its low prevalence. The symptoms which are experienced by people suffering from these sleep disorder are related to those skilled in mental associated illnesses along with other sleep disorders which make narcolepsy diagnosis challenging. Narcolepsy is also confused with other medical conditions for example seizures and understanding problems in school going children producing it more hard to diagnose.

The diagnosis of narcolepsy is primarily dependent on the signs and symptoms that are present in individuals suffering from the condition. The physical examination, medical and loved ones history and laboratory tests are quite beneficial in diagnosing narcolepsy.

People going for narcolepsy diagnosis are consequently advised to tell the doctor treating them all of the symptoms they're experiencing, some personal habits that could interfere with the sleep cycle and also the duration the patient has been experiencing the symptoms. To be able to give reliable details, doctors suggestions that an every day recording of the sleep pattern need to be taken for a number of weeks and presented towards the physician when going to seek for remedy.

The physical examination marks the initial point in diagnosing narcolepsy and also the physician checks for any underlying condition that could be causing narcolepsy related symptoms. Life style behaviors for example the use of alcohol and other forms of challenging drugs are also an issue of concern during the physical examination.

Outcomes obtained from the physical examination figure out regardless of whether the patient should seek the attention of a sleep specialist for further diagnosis. Most narcolepsy diagnostic procedures are carried out in specially designed laboratories that are specifically created to monitor the patients sleep pattern. Numerous tests might be carried out in this sleep centers exactly where by the patient is necessary to invest a night or much more in the center. Tests which could be carried out to diagnose narcolepsy consist of:-


This is regarded as to be the standard test for diagnosing narcolepsy. The test is according to the use of a special instrument that electronically transmits and records some distinct physical activities taking place in the patient whilst asleep which may contain brain functions, breathing and muscle movements. Any info that's recorded by the measuring instrument is analyzed by the sleep specialist to establish whether the patient is suffering from narcolepsy.

Several Seep Latency Tests

The test is performed following the polysomnogram has been carried out. The test is aimed at determining the time it truly is going to take for a patient to fall asleep during the day. Patients attending this test are instructed to take four to five naps in every single two hours. The test starts two hours following the individual undergoing the test has woken up and is needed to take the initial nap. It has been observed that people that are not suffering from narcolepsy may take 10-20 minutes to fall asleep even though those suffering from narcolepsy might take less time to fall asleep.

Other tests that may possibly be employed in the diagnosis of narcolepsy incorporate Epworth sleepiness scale which makes use of a questionnaire to study sleep behaviors and hypocretin test which determines the quantity of hypocretin in CSF. Hypocretin is really a chemical that is recognized to trigger wakefulness and individuals with narcolepsy have low amounts of this chemical.

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