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Intellectual Abilities of Children with Narcolepsy

Abstract : High cognitive functioning could be a protective factor for school difficulties, behavioral and mood impairments in children with narcolepsy. To investigate this factor, we studied the intellectual abilities of 74 children with narcolepsy (43 boys, 11.7 years old at diagnosis, 91% of cataplexies, 64% obese, 100% HLA positive for DR-DQB1*06:02). All children underwent a one-night polysomnography followed by Multiple Sleep Latency Tests, an evaluation of intelligence quotient (IQ), and filled standardized questionnaires. Thirty-eight percent had high potentialities (HP defined by IQ > 130) and 48% had school difficulties. Using non-parametric tests, we found that HP children reported less difficulties at school and tended to have less impulsivity, conduct, and learning disorders than those without HP. They also tended to be less obese and had less desaturation. Using a multivariate regression analysis, we found an association between the REM sleep percentage and the IQ. REM sleep could be involved in the dynamic changes contributing to the equilibrium of intellectual functioning. This study highlights that despite their frequent school difficulties, narcolepsy per se is unlikely to be a cause of intellectual disability in children. Prompt diagnosis and management of comorbidities such as obesity and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) could improve cognitive and school performances in these children.
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Submitted on : Friday, January 8, 2021 - 11:54:30 AM
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Marine Thieux, Min Zhang, Agathe Marcastel, Vania Herbillon, Anne Guignard-Perret, et al.. Intellectual Abilities of Children with Narcolepsy. Journal of Clinical Medicine, MDPI, 2020, 9 (12), pp.4075. ⟨10.3390/jcm9124075⟩. ⟨inserm-03103682⟩

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