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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Narcolepsy


Other Names for this Disease
  • Gélineau disease
  • Gelineau syndrome
  • Gelineau's syndrome
  • Narcolepsy-cataplexy
  • Narcolepsy-cataplexy syndrome
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.

Treatment

Newline Maker

How might narcolepsy be treated?

There is currently no cure for narcolepsy, but some of the symptoms can be managed with medications and lifestyle changes.[1]

Most affected people improve if they maintain a regular sleep schedule, usually 7.5 to 8 hours of sleep per night. Scheduled naps during the day also may help. Other measures that may help include participating in an exercise program; receiving emotional support and career or vocational counseling; and avoiding high-risk behaviors such as alcohol and drug use, which may make symptoms worse.[2] Common-sense measures should be taken to enhance sleep quality (such as avoiding heavy meals before bed time).[1]

Treatment with medications involves the use of central nervous system (CNS) stimulants. These medications help reduce daytime sleepiness and improve this symptom in 65-85% of affected people.[2] Two types of antidepressant drugs (tricyclics, and selective serotonin and noradrenergic reuptake inhibitors) are effective in controlling cataplexy in many people. Sodium oxybate (a strong sedative taken during the night) may also be used to treat narcolepsy.[1]

You can view detailed information about the treatment of narcolepsy on Medscape's Web site.
Last updated: 4/27/2015

References
  1. Narcolepsy Fact Sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. January 5, 2015; http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/narcolepsy/detail_narcolepsy.htm.
  2. Ali M Bozorg. Narcolepsy. Medscape. April 15, 2015; http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1188433-overview.


Clinical Trials & Research for this Disease

  • ClinicalTrials.gov lists trials that are studying or have studied Narcolepsy. Click on the link to go to ClinicalTrials.gov to read descriptions of these studies.
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.  Access to this database is free of charge.

Medical Products

The medication(s) listed in the table(s) below have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treatment of this condition. The FDA Office of Orphan Products Development designates "orphan products" for those that treat rare diseases affecting fewer than 200,000 Americans. The table(s) below may not be an exhaustive list of drugs or products used to treat this condition. There may be other products available that are not considered orphan products. To search for all FDA approved drugs, visit Drugs@FDA. You can find orphan products used to treat other conditions by searching the Orphan Drug Product Designation database.


Generic Name Modafinil
Trade Name
(Manufacturer Name)
Provigil®
(Cephalon® Oncology)
Indication
The FDA has approved this product to be used in this manner.
Improve wakefulness in patients with excessive daytime sleepiness associated with narcolepsy.
More Information about this product Drug Information Portal
Medline Plus Health Information

Generic Name Oxybate
Trade Name
(Manufacturer Name)
Xyrem®
(Jazz Pharmaceuticals)
Indication
The FDA has approved this product to be used in this manner.
Treatment of cataplexy associated with narcolepsy.
More Information about this product Drug Information Portal

Other Names for this Disease
  • Gélineau disease
  • Gelineau syndrome
  • Gelineau's syndrome
  • Narcolepsy-cataplexy
  • Narcolepsy-cataplexy syndrome
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.