Medical Questions > Mental Health > Sleep Disorders Forum

Is it possible to have narcolepsy without all the symptoms?

I just finished a sleep study where they held me over for a MSLT (I think that's what it was called- where they make you take naps). The tech I worked with said if she didn't know any better, she would think I was narcoleptic. I don't see the doctor for a whole MONTH to see what the results are, but the more I read about narcolepsy, the more I believe that MIGHT be what's going on.

However, when I think of narcolepsy, I think of Grandpa from The Simpson's-- always falling asleep at the drop of a hat...I don't do that (though I AM extremely tired all day, I am usually able to make it through with extreme amounts of caffeine). If it were up to me, I would sleep on and off during the day, but with coffee and coke I am able to stay awake enough to work and take care of the necessities at home.

Also, I don't have the cataplexy element that I have been reading about-- is it possible to be narcoleptic without it?

I do have the hallucinations shortly upon falling asleep; for a long time I thought they were just night terrors, but if I do have narcolepsy, that would explain them. It's gotten to the point where one time the only reason I awoke was because I tasted blood-- my husband was trying to wake me up (I was screaming) and I bit his hand so hard he bled. I am also aware of a few instances of sleepwalking when I was younger and, of course, the excessive sleepiness/yawning all day, every day.

I first remember these problems right around the time I became a teenager and attributed them to hormones. Then later, in college, I got a diagnosis of mono but thought it was strange that I was able to make it through the whole semester and get an "A" in all my classes when I supppsedly had mono. After that, I was diagnosed as bipolar and was hospitalized and at that point I would fall asleep driving and such, and attributed that to me not being used to all the drugs they had me on. But here I am, 7 years later, and the sleepiness and hallucinations haven't gone away.

So, long story short (sort of), I am wondering if it is possible to have narcolepsy if you dont have all of the symptoms. If so, does anyone know if it is possible to treat narcolepsy and bipolar together? I have read that many people take stimulants during the day for narcolepsy, but I am worried that that would put me into a manic state.

Thanks to anyone who has taken the time to read this!
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