For professionals

Clinician planning for anesthesia, hospitalization, and medical emergencies

for people with idiopathic hypersomnia or narcolepsy type 1 or 2

Hypersomnia sleep disorders, such as idiopathic hypersomnia and narcolepsy types 1 and 2, are chronic neurologic conditions defined by excessive daytime sleepiness and several other debilitating symptoms.

Person(s) with hypersomnias (PWH) may face unique challenges when hospitalized or having anesthesia (including during dental procedures and colonoscopies). PWH and their healthcare team need to pay special attention to managing hypersomnia symptoms before, during, and after anesthesia or hospitalization.

Step 1

Download our PDF “Clinician’s guide to hospitalization and anesthesia for people with idiopathic hypersomnia and narcolepsy types 1 and 2” to inform all healthcare team members what they need to know about hypersomnia symptoms, common problems that may happen during anesthesia and hospital stays, and accommodations that may help.

Step 2

Download our “Anesthesia and hospital stay care plan” to help with pre-op consultations and planned hospitalizations. Ideally, the PWH’s sleep doctor, admitting doctor or surgeon, and anesthesiologist will work together to make a care plan before any planned hospitalization or procedure. Sleep doctors may also help PWH make care plans for emergency situations. (Here is our example care plan.)

Note: Use Acrobat Reader to complete our fillable PDF form. Click each text box to type in information or Tab to cycle through each form field. Font size will automatically get smaller to allow more text once the end of a line or box has been reached.

Step 3

Refer your patients to our web page made just for them “Prepare for anesthesia, hospital stays, and medical emergencies” where they can also print out medical alert cards.


Aflaki, Sena, et al. “Case Report of a Patient with Idiopathic Hypersomnia and a Family History of Malignant Hyperthermia Undergoing General Anesthesia: An Overview of the Anesthetic Considerations.” A & A Case Reports, vol. 8, no. 9, 2017, pp. 238–241, doi:10.1213/xaa.0000000000000481. Free Abstract & Request Full Text. See also HF’s Journal Article Summary.

Hershner, Shelley, et al. “Knowledge Gaps in the Perioperative Management of Adults with Narcolepsy.” Anesthesia & Analgesia, vol. 129, no. 1, 2019, pp. 204–211, doi:10.1213/ane.0000000000004088. Free Full Text.

Hershner, Shelley, Rahul Kakkar, et al. “Narcolepsy, Anesthesia, and Sedation: A Survey of the Perioperative Experience of Patients With Narcolepsy.” Anesthesia & Analgesia, vol. 129, no. 5, 2019, pp. 1374–1380, doi:10.1213/ane.0000000000003954. Free Abstract & Request Full Text.

Hillman, David R., et al. “Society of Anesthesia and Sleep Medicine Position Paper on Patient Sleep during Hospitalization.” Anesthesia & Analgesia, vol. 136, no. 4, 2023, pp. 814–824, doi:10.1213/ane.0000000000006395. Free Full Text.

Hu, Sally, et al. “Anesthetic Management of Narcolepsy Patients during Surgery: A Systematic Review.” Anesthesia & Analgesia, vol. 126, no. 1, 2018, pp. 233–246, doi:10.1213/ane.0000000000002228. Free Full Text.

LaBarbera, Vincent, et al. “Central Disorders of Hypersomnolence, Restless Legs Syndrome, and Surgery with General Anesthesia: Patient Perceptions.” Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, vol. 12, 2018, doi:10.3389/fnhum.2018.00099. Free Full Text.

Rodriguez‐Cruz, Vivian, et al. “Drug‐drug Interaction between Diclofenac and Gamma‐hydroxybutyric Acid.” Biopharmaceutics & Drug Disposition, vol. 42, no. 8, 2021, pp. 351–358, doi:10.1002/bdd.2296. Free Abstract & Request Full Text.

Trotti, Lynn Marie, et al. “Flumazenil for the Treatment of Refractory Hypersomnolence: Clinical Experience With 153 Patients.” Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, vol. 12, no. 10, 2016, pp. 1389–1394, doi:10.5664/jcsm.6196. Free Full Text.

Published Aug. 21, 2023 |
Revised Jan. 22, 2024