This is the first report describing the efficacy of modafinil therapy for narcolepsy in patients in Taiwan. The purpose of this study was to compare the objective Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT) and the subjective Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) for evaluating the efficacy of modafinil in treating excessive daytime sleepiness in patients with narcolepsy in Taiwan. Ten consecutive patients with narcolepsy-with-cataplexy who were treated with 200 mg/day modafinil for more than 6 months at our sleep center between January 2003 and December 2007 were included in this study. This comparative study was prompted by the requirement of the Bureau of National Health Insurance in Taiwan that modafinil users need to be followed up with MSLTs every 6-12 months. The mean age at onset of narcolepsy onset in these 10 patients was 11.8 ± 3.3 years, and eight (80) were male. We compared the differences in MSLT and ESS between baseline and follow-up at 6-12 months after starting modafinil therapy using paired t tests. ESS scores (p < 0.001) were considerably more sensitive than MSLT scores (p < 0.05) in documenting efficacy of modafinil and that the improvements in MSLT scores were minimal and remained in the pathologically sleepy range. These findings suggest that the ESS is a more sensitive and clinically meaningful tool to evaluate the efficacy of modafinil in narcolepsy.
- Epworth sleepiness scale
- multiple sleep latency test