Sleeping sickness

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Sleeping sickness is a parasitic disease that can only be caught in the tropics, either Rainforests or Swamps. Sleeping Sickness is a very slow disease to develop and also gain immunity to, so affected pawns will remain in bed for a long time.


General symptoms include slightly impaired consciousness and manipulation, a small amount of pain, and eventually occasional vomiting. Advanced symptoms include a small to moderate amount of pain, more adversely affected consciousness and manipulation, more frequent vomiting, eventually a loss of consciousness, and finally, death.

If sleeping sickness is left untreated, it will kill the affected colonist in around 8.333 days from discovery. Good treatment can slow the disease to the point where it takes up to 20 days to kill. It takes around 8.47 days to develop immunity to sleeping sickness, assuming the patient is rested in an ordinary bed for the whole time, and under the age of 40.

Diseases can place a long-term strain on medical supplies. Planting healroot or making other long-term plans might be wise at the first sign of this disease.


Penoxycyline prevents colonists from falling sick to the Sleeping sickness but does nothing to stop an infection already in progress.


Minor (Initial) - Severity: 0 - 0.4374[edit]

  • +2% Pain
  • -2% Consciousness
  • -2% Manipulation

Minor (Advanced) - Severity: 0.4375 - 0.624[edit]

  • +3% Pain
  • -4% Consciousness
  • -4% Manipulation

Major - Severity: 0.625 - 0.874[edit]

  • Vomiting every 3.5 days (84 hours) on average
  • +5% Pain
  • -15% Consciousness
  • -6% Manipulation

Extreme (Initial) - Severity: 0.875 - 0.9374[edit]

  • Vomiting every 1.75 days (42 hours) on average
  • +10% Pain
  • -20% Consciousness
  • -20% Manipulation

Extreme (Advanced) - Severity: 0.9375 - 1[edit]

  • Vomiting every day (24 hours) on average
  • Maximum 10% Consciousness
  • +15% Pain
  • -20% Manipulation
  • Death


  • When not immune, severity increases by 0.12 per day.
  • When immune, severity decreases by 0.176 per day.
  • Immunity increases by 0.11 per day when sick.
  • Treatment slows progression by a maximum of 0.07 per day.
    • This means the disease will progress by 0.05 per day at 100% treatment.


Even though sleeping sickness is a slow disease, it isn't as difficult to treat compared to malaria and the plague. Treatment is administered once every 32 hours. However, you should still follow standard protocols and ensure that patients of Sleeping Sickness are rested at all times, well-fed, and promptly treated when they need to be treated.

A well-fed pawn with 100% Immunity Gain Speed that constantly rests on a proper bed technically doesn't need to get treated. This isn't recommended - if they get up for a snack, for example, then the disease will progress quicker.


For those with a base immunity gain rate of 36.6% or less, there is no chance that they will be able to survive sleeping sickness normally, even with 100% treatment quality for all treatments and rest in a hospital bed with vitals monitor connected. This includes very old people over the age of 120, and some people with kidney and liver damage (physical or chemical). A pawn with poor treatment and without enough rest will also be vulnerable to death.

To save the colonist you can do the following:

  • Administer healer mech serum- instantly treats the disease
  • Administer luciferium- if pawn has 22% or more immunity gain speed remaining initially, this gives pawn a chance to survive
  • Use a biosculpter pod'sContent added by the Ideology DLC healer cycle.

Version history[edit]

In 1.0 treatment above 53% quality used to be able to cause the disease to regress; if applied early enough, it could cause the disease to vanish entirely.

In 1.1, disease progression was significantly accelerated, and treatment no longer causes disease to regress. In addition, in a minor update of 1.1, immunity gain was boosted, such that colonists can survive without treatment as long as they remain in bed.