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Doctor insights on: What Part Of The Brain Causes Narcolepsy

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Which part of the brain causes narcolepsy?

Which part of the brain causes narcolepsy?

Hypothalamus: The part of the brain known as the hypothalamus is responsible for narcolepsy. Lack of a neurotransmitter called hypocretin (orexin) in this part of the brain results in the illness. ...Read more

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Dr. Michelle Zetoony
274 doctors shared insights

Narcolepsy (Definition)

Narcolepsy is a condition characterized by extreme sleepiness every few hours during the day and frequent, unexpected sleep attacks. This sleep disorder is believed to be caused by a decrease in a protein in the brain. There is no cure for narcolepsy, but its ...Read more


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Can narcolepsy cause brain cells to die?

Other way around: Actually, narcolepsy is caused by the death of brain cells, not the other way around. Some cells in the hypothalamus produce a chemical called orexin or hypocretin; this chemical in needed for normal sleep/wake cycles. In narcolepsy, these cells are destroyed by your own body (autoimmune), resulting in the loss of the chemical. Presently, there is no way to directly replace the chemical. ...Read more

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My sleep study showed 160 brain arousals; however my MSLT was normal with no REM onset. Could I still have narcolepsy?

My sleep study showed 160 brain arousals; however my MSLT was normal with no REM onset. Could I still have narcolepsy?

No: you have a parasomnia, means that some event is waking you up constantly. the most common cause I see of this is restless legs. you need a video sleep study to see if we can see what is waking you up. ...Read more

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I have a myriad of symptoms but it seems no one doctor wants to fully investigate all of them. I was diagnosed with narcolepsy by a sleep study doctor, but I have no energy, numbness and tingling in my extremities, and my biggest complaint, brain fog and

I have a myriad of symptoms but it seems no one doctor wants to fully investigate all of them. I was diagnosed with narcolepsy by a sleep study doctor, but I have no energy, numbness and tingling in my extremities, and my biggest complaint, brain fog and

Talk to your dr.: You should discuss your symptoms and treatment w/ your dr. Meds such as Provigil or amphetamine derivatives like Ritalin (methylphenidate) or Adderall can help. Others include SSRI, SNRI or tricyclic antidepressants which suppress REM sleep and sudden loss of muscle tone. Sodium oxybate helps improve sleep. Exercise; brief, regular daytime naps, regular sleep time & avoidance of alcohol or nicotine can also help. ...Read more

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Does narcolepsy cause depression? If so how? I have narcolepsy and I am hardly ever depressed?

Does narcolepsy cause depression? If so how? I have narcolepsy and I am hardly ever depressed?

Yes and No: Some people with narcolepsy are upset or they become depressed because falling asleep causes them problems in school or at work. Not everyone has this however, and a person with narcolepsy should not have symptoms of depression, as a rule. It sounds like you are doing well. Keep up the good work! ...Read more

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Can depression cause sudden bouts of narcolepsy? Can one be depressed without even "feeling/knowing" it?

Can depression cause sudden bouts of narcolepsy?  Can one be depressed without even "feeling/knowing" it?

No and maybe: Read about Narcolepsy and causes: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narcolepsy A person can have both, but it's not a cause. Denial for reasons like stigma, etc can make one fail to see their depression, but most adults probably will admit to some awareness. Perhaps not. Knowing the range of symptoms can help - irritability , fatigue, etc. Seek a good psych eval and ask ?s. Best! ...Read more

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I have successfully treated narcolepsy (take provigil, xyrem). About a year ago, i suddenly developed severe chronic insomnia. What could cause this?

I have successfully treated narcolepsy (take provigil, xyrem). About a year ago, i suddenly developed severe chronic insomnia. What could cause this?

Insomnia: Check the time and amount of Provigil that you take identify other stressors try Ambien (zolpidem) short term or increase xyrem also cbti has good results. ...Read more

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What could cause weird neurological symptoms with narcolepsy?

Hypocretin: in narcolepsy, many individuals have a loss of hypocretin producing cells. This loss of hypocretin may contribute to some of the neurological symptoms seen in narcolepsy. ...Read more

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Does the "atkins diet" work for people with narcolepsy? Is there anything in narcolepsy that would cause the Atkins diet to not work?

Does the "atkins diet" work for people with narcolepsy? Is there anything in narcolepsy that would cause the Atkins diet to not work?

See below: A low carbohydrate diet, under the guidance of a doctor, may work as an adjunct. But if you have narcolepsy, it is recommended that you consult a sleep doctor so that it can be evaluated and treated. Good sleep hygiene and medications are the mainstays of treatment. Hope that helps! ...Read more

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What could be the cause of sudden dizziness ? My boyfriend has narcolepsy. Meds: lilyfluoxitine. Its when he gets up. Not feeling nauseous though.

What could be the cause of sudden dizziness ? My boyfriend has narcolepsy. Meds: lilyfluoxitine. Its when he gets up. Not feeling nauseous though.

Several ideas: I am not sure whether the narcolepsy is related to the dizziness. I have 3 possibilities for the dizziness. Dizziness is a very non-specific symptom. If it is light headedness, this is a central problem and is related to either low blood pressure or autonomic dysfunction. If it is vertigo, then it may be bppv and will spontaneously resolve or with head excersizes. Rarely it is central (brain). ...Read more

Cerebrum (Definition)

Cerebrum essentially refers to the majority of the brain. Embryologically, it develops from the telencephalon, and together with the diencephalon, ...Read more