Insomnia causes problems for people all around the world, but if you suffer from insomnia, be thankful it’s not Fatal familial insomnia.
If it was, you wouldn’t have to worry about being tired for too long because, as the name suggests, you’d soon be dead.
This isn’t something that can be caught and treated, either. This disease has no known cure.
The average survival time after being diagnosed is about 18 months. It wouldn’t be an easy 18 months, either, as the progressively worsening insomnia causes hallucinations, delirium, and confusional states like that of dementia.
This disease is so stubborn that one man with it was admitted to a hospital where they tried to put him into an induced coma, only to find out that his brain failed to shut down completely.
This disease is extremely rare and only affects 100 people in 40 families. It is usually due to an inherited gene, but there is a variation which can lead to someone without the mutation in their family to develop the disease. In that case it is called sporadic fatal insomnia.
You wouldn’t know you have this disease until you were middle aged, as that’s when the onset would be. Because of this, people with a history of the disease in their family are encouraged to get tested before having children and passing it along to them.
If only one parent has the gene, there is a 50% chance that a child inherits the disease.