FOR MEDICAL STAFF
What should paramedics do when they find someone with our medical information card?
Easiest answer is; nothing. Every person with narcolepsy who is having a cataplectic attack recovers by themselves.
Unless the person has injured him or herself by falling. A full blown cataplectic attack will include total loss of the voluntary muscles. Some people will have injuries from the fall. Be sure to check that. Also check if the person is in an uncomfortable position. And just to be sure you should check the heart!
How do you recognize a cataplectic attack?
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.
Why do they sound drunk?
While they are struggling to get out of their attack they will try to communicate. This is almost impossible for the loss of muscle control. Most people will sound drunk because of this. Be aware that because of our medication most narcoleptics don’t drink a drop and will still sound drunk in this situation! When you encountered our medical information card we can assure you, you are not dealing with a drunk or drug addict!
Monitor the person but let the person recover by themselves.