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MSLT: Maintenance of Sleep Latency Test

The Gold Standard for testing a patient to make a diagnosis of Narcolepsy.  If a patient presents to the physician the following complaints an overnight Polysomnography with MSLT may be ordered:

  • Do you have problems staying awake or alert during the day or do you have sleep attacks?
  • Have you ever fallen down when angry or laughing?
  • If you nap, are your naps refreshing?
  • Do you ever awaken from sleep unable to move?
  • Do you see, hear or feel things or experience vivid hallucinations when falling to sleep or awakening from sleep?

An MSLT is a series of 20 minute naps (4-5) following an overnight Polysomnography.  The opportunity to take a nap is offered at two hour intervals, beginning when the patient wakes in the morning.

Purpose: two or more naps containing REM sleep may test positive for Narcolepsy.

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