Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS)

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Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS)

Approximately one in ten adult Americans suffer from Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), also known as Willis-Ekbom Disease. This sleep-related movement disorder is known best for its overwhelming and often unpleasant urges to move the legs while at rest.

The National Sleep Foundation offers a number of resources to help patients who are currently suffering from or think that they may have RLS. Explore the sections below for more information:

Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), also known as Willis-Ekbom Disease, is a neurologic sensorimotor disorder that is characterized by an overwhelming urge to move the legs when they are at rest. The urge to move the legs is usually, but not always, accompanied by unpleasant sensations.

It is less common but possible to have RLS symptoms in the arms, face, torso, and genital region. RLS symptoms occur during inactivity and they are temporarily relieved by movement or pressure. Symptoms of RLS are most severe in the evening and nighttime hours and can profoundly disrupt a patient's sleep and daily life.

Additional studies and resources include:

  1. A genetic risk factor for periodic limb movements in sleep.
  2. Genome-wide association study of restless legs syndrome identifies common variants in three genomic regions.
  3. Restless Legs Syndrome: Prevalence and Impact in Children and Adolescents—The Peds REST Study
  4. Impact of restless legs syndrome and iron deficiency on attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in children.
  5. NSF Alert: People with Parkinson’s Disease more likely to have RLS