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Narcolepsy Specialist

The Beverly Hills Lung and Sleep Institute

Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine Specialists located in Beverly Hills, CA

Excessive daytime sleepiness and involuntarily falling asleep during normal activities may be warning signs of narcolepsy. At The Beverly Hills Lung and Sleep Institute in Beverly Hills, California, Ashkan Naraghi, MD, and Dan Naim, MD, diagnose and treat narcolepsy in patients of all ages. If you think you have narcolepsy, call the office or book an appointment online today.


What is narcolepsy?

Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder that affects your brain’s ability to control your sleep-wake cycle. When you have narcolepsy, you may wake up feeling well-rested only to experience extreme drowsiness during most of the day.

People with narcolepsy may suddenly and unwillingly fall asleep. These sleep episodes can occur during activities like eating, speaking, and even driving. Narcolepsy can interfere with your personal and professional life, causing major disruptions in your daily routine.

There’s no cure for narcolepsy, but the experts at The Beverly Hills Lung and Sleep Institute can help you manage the symptoms and lead a normal, productive life.

What are the signs and symptoms of narcolepsy?

Narcolepsy is a lifelong condition, but symptoms don’t worsen over time. Symptoms may partially improve over the years, but they never completely go away.

The most common signs and symptoms of narcolepsy include:

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness
  • Cataplexy, which is the sudden loss of muscle tone while awake
  • A temporary inability to move or speak before sleep or after waking
  • Vivid hallucinations that may accompany sleep paralysis
  • Insomnia, or fragmented sleep
  • Brief sleep episodes that may occur during habitual activities 

All people who have narcolepsy experience excessive daytime sleepiness. Only about 10-25% of people with narcolepsy experience all the other symptoms throughout the course of their illness.

Who gets narcolepsy?

Narcolepsy affects about one in 2,000 people. Symptoms usually begin in childhood, adolescence, or early adulthood and persist throughout life. 

Narcolepsy often remains undiagnosed or gets misdiagnosed as a psychiatric disorder, so the actual prevalence may be greater.

How is narcolepsy diagnosed and treated?

The Beverly Hills Lung and Sleep Institute performs a clinical examination and thoroughly reviews your medical history. They may ask you to record your symptoms in a sleep journal for a week or two. 

They may also perform tests like a sleep study or multiple sleep latency test (MSLT). A sleep study records your brain activity, breathing, and eye movements during sleep and an MSLT measures how quickly you fall asleep during the day. These tests help rule out other conditions, like sleep apnea.

After diagnosing your condition, The Beverly Hills Lung and Sleep Institute creates an individualized treatment plan. They discuss all available treatment options, which may include:

  • Medications to manage symptoms
  • Maintaining a regular sleep schedule
  • Taking short naps at regular intervals
  • Avoiding nicotine, caffeine, and alcohol, especially at night
  • Exercising daily
  • Relaxing before bed with calming activities like a warm bath

Narcolepsy is a complex and often misunderstood condition, but treatment is available. Call The Beverly Hills Lung and Sleep Institute or book an appointment online today.