- "Sleeping sickness" is also another name for Narcolepsy.
Sleeping sickness, or African trypanosomiasis, is a disease. It is caused by a protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei. The tsetse fly spreads it. It is endemic in certain areas of tropical Africa. Today, between 50,000 and 70,000 people are infected with it.
Today, drugs are available that can treat the disease. The treatment is usually done in a hospital, because the drugs have many side-effects. Second-stage drugs based on arsenic are dangerous, and about 8% of the people die from taking the drug. The best prevention is to avoid insect bites.