Fatal familial insomnia (FFI)



  • Normal sleep has different stages that together last 90 to 100 minutes:

    FFI patients cannot go past stage 1 and thus their brains are not getting the rest they need to revive, as most reviving and repairing processes of the body are believed to happen during these deeper sleep stages.


  • no known cure
  • sleeping pills and barbiturates are unhelpful and have been shown to worsen the clinical manifestations and hasten the course of the disease

Manifestation: Signs and Symptoms

  • progressively worsening insomnia
  • hallucinations
  • delirium
  • dementia-like confusion
  • random muscular jerks


  • terminal around 18 months following symptom onset 


There are 25 reported families in the world that carry the gene for FFI: 5 Italian, 2 French, 4 American, 1 Japanese, 2 Australian, 8 German, 1 Austrian, and 2 British.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: