wHY IS NARCOLEPSY SO DIFFICULT TO DIAGNOSE?

wHY IS NARCOLEPSY SO DIFFICULT TO DIAGNOSE?

The path to diagnosing narcolepsy.

Narcolepsy is a lifelong disorder that is widely underrecognized.1-4

  • Less than half of patients with narcolepsy are estimated to be diagnosed.3
    • Symptoms generally start during young adulthood, most commonly before 25 years of age.3,5
    • Seems to affect both males and females equally.1
    • Identified as the primary sleep diagnosis in about 1 in 20 patients in a sample of US sleep clinics.6
The path to diagnosing narcolepsy.

People may suffer many years before being diagnosed.3,4,8,9

  • An accurate diagnosis can often take 10 years or more.3,4,8,9
    • Narcolepsy can be misdiagnosed as another neurological illness or a psychiatric condition such as major depressive disorder.10-12
    • Narcolepsy can also be present with other sleep abnormalities such as obstructive sleep apnea.5,13
    • Mild- or late-onset cataplexy can also contribute to delayed diagnosis.8

Even diagnosed patients may have unrecognized symptomatology.14

  • Cataplexy can be difficult to identify and may often go undetected.4,15
    • It is estimated that about 70% of patients with narcolepsy may suffer from cataplexy.1*
    • Yet in the US, only about 19% of patients diagnosed with narcolepsy have also been diagnosed with cataplexy.14

Cataplexy in Narcolepsy:

Estimated Prevalence vs Diagnosis

Estimated Prevalence vs Diagnosis

*Based on prevalence data cited by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) as of April, 2016.1

Based on health claims data showing an estimated 26,754 total patients identified as having narcolepsy as of April, 2015, of which 5180 have been identified as having narcolepsy with cataplexy.14