Narcolepsy type 1 results from probable autoimmune disruption of hypothalamic hypocretinergic neurons. Secondary narcolepsy can occur as a result of other conditions affecting the central nervous system, including limbic paraneoplastic encephalitis. We report the case of a 19-year-old patient presenting with acute-onset diurnal hypersomnolence, hyperphagia, sexual dysfunction, and psychiatric disturbances. Further investigations revealed a limbic paraneoplastic encephalitis associated with mediastinal thymic seminoma. Tumor removal and immunosuppressive treatment resulted in a partial benefit on psychiatric disturbances but did not improve daytime sleepiness. A comprehensive sleep assessment led to the diagnosis of secondary narcolepsy type 1 with reduced cerebrospinal fluid hypocretin-1 levels and revealed the presence of the HLA DQB1*0602 allele, typically associated with idiopathic narcolepsy, for which we hypothesize a possible immunopathogenic role. Sodium oxybate was successfully administered. Narcolepsy is often overlooked in patients with limbic paraneoplastic encephalitis. A prompt assessment and an adequate symptomatic treatment can improve the disease burden. CITATION: Rossi S, Asioli GM, Rizzo G, et al. Onset of narcolepsy type 1 in a paraneoplastic encephalitis associated with a thymic seminoma. J Clin Sleep Med. 2021;17(12):2557-2560.
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||Journal of clinical sleep medicine : JCSM : official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1 2021|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Clinical Neurology