WHAT IS CATAPLEXY?
Cataplexy is an abrupt temporary loss of voluntary muscular function and tone.
This is triggered by an emotional stimulus such as laughter, pleasure, anger, or excitement.
This can manifest as a full body collapse as well as only on parts of your body.
Like your face muscles starting to hang while laughing for example. Or buckling knees where you can barely stay up.
A full blown attack will look like someone collapsing from a heart attack or seizure. They will lose speech and any other way to respond to your questions. Most people have their eyes closed but are very aware to everything happening around them. They just can’t respond to it until they gain back their control over their muscles. This normally only takes a few minutes although there are severe cases that last longer.
While recovering, this person will most likely have trouble with speech and sound like a drunk. Still unable to control all muscles.
Although Cataplexy by itself is not dangerous, the consequences can be. Like head injury when you fall or landing in an awkward position.
Some well known triggers for cataplexy:
– Running into an acquaintance unexpectedly.
– Good jokes.
– Sudden (scary) moves right next to you.
– Sports and gaming.
If you have full body collapses you should not take it lightly. Make people around you aware it can happen and what (not) to do. Apply on this website for a medical information card if you are outside a lot on your own.