Sunday, February 6, 2011

Words of The Day

I had never experienced a "night terror" before traveling to Asia. Well, I thought that was what they were called. I'd wake up in the middle of the night and be: completely paralyzed, seeing someone standing in the door to my room, hearing someone saying my name loudly, or all three.

Then I'd really wake up.

It was extremely frightening, especially since I was mostly traveling alone and staying in, er, less than reputable places. Some of my accommodations were literally mud huts with bamboo doors on them.

Today as I was bumbling through practice USMLE questions I came upon this answer to a question:

So THAT is what they were!!

Hypnopompic and hypnagogic hallucinations.

Ok, so aside from the fact that they are seriously cool words to add to one's vocabulary, I was intrigued by the transient nature of my former "classic symptoms of narcolepsy".

I stopped taking chloroquine about 5 months into my trip and the symptoms stopped. Of course I have heard that 'vivid dreams' are a common side effect of the prophylaxis...but now I can't help but think they should add hypnopompic and hypnagogic hallucinations to the list!


Grumpy, M.D. said...

It's interesting what you learn in retrospect.

Cara said...

Bizarre. I was just studying "hypnogogic hallucinations" this afternoon for my mental health nursing midterm on Tues. Then I come here and HELLO! apparently I'm studying again. LOL

I can't take codeine as it gives me the WORST nightmares as soon as I close my eyes. Drugs - prevent some shit and cause other shit. Too bad I can't just write that on the pharmocologic part of the test Tues. LOL

eulogos said...

I had this phenomenon in high school when I used to deprive myself of sleep and drink huge amounts of green tea. Paralyzed, thought I was awake, sometimes thought I was floating slowly off my bed over by my stereo, or by my door, details of my room absolutely vivid and detailed, nothing like a sleeping dream.