Effective treatment of narcolepsy-like symptoms with high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation: A case report

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Abstract

Rationale:

Narcolepsy is a rare sleep disorder with disrupted sleep-architecture. Clinical management of narcolepsy lies dominantly on symptom-driven pharmacotherapy. The treatment role of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) for narcolepsy remains unexplored.

Patient concerns:

In this paper, we present a case of a 14-year-old young girl with excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), cataplexy and hypnagogic hallucinations.

Diagnoses:

After excluding other possible medical conditions, this patient was primarily diagnosed with narcolepsy.

Interventions:

The patient received 25 sessions of high-frequency rTMS over the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC).

Outcomes:

The symptoms of EDS and cataplexy significantly improved after rTMS treatment. Meanwhile, her score in the Epworth sleep scale (ESS) also remarkably decreased.

Lessons:

This case indicates that rTMS may be selected as a safe and effective alternative strategy for treating narcolepsy-like symptoms. Well-designed researches are warranted in future investigations on this topic.

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