Movement Disorder Specialists   -

Pasadena, CA

About Restless Leg Syndrome

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a neurological disorder characterized by an irresistible urge to move one's body to stop uncomfortable or odd sensations. It most commonly affects the legs, but can affect the arms, and torso. Moving the affected body part modulates the sensations, providing temporary relief. In a survey among members of the Restless Legs Syndrome Foundation it was found that up to 45% of patients had their first symptoms before the age of 20 years.

The diagnosis of RLS relies essentially on a good medical history and physical examination. Peripheral neuropathy, radiculopathy and leg cramps should be considered in the differential diagnosis. In these conditions, pain is often more pronounced than the urge to move. Doppler ultrasound evaluation of the vascular system is essential in all cases to rule out venous disorders which is a common cause of RLS.

Treatment of restless legs syndrome involves identifying the cause of symptoms if possible. The treatment process is designed to reduce symptoms, including decreasing the number of nights with symptoms and the severity of symptoms. This means improving overall quality of life, decreasing daytime somnolence, and improving the quality of sleep. All of these goals are taken care of through non-drug and pharmacologic therapies. Gabapentin (Horizant™) and opioids are prescribed for persistent cases of RLS.

Educational Websites

The Restless Leg Foundation
The Restless Legs Syndrome Foundation is a non-profit organization providing the latest information about RLS. The goals of the foundation are to increase awareness, improve treatments, and through research find a cure for restless leg syndrome, a condition which severely affects the lives of millions of individuals. Incorporated since 1992.

International Restless Legs Syndrome Study Group
The International Restless Legs Syndrome Study Group (IRLSSG) is an organization committed to advancing basic and clinical research on Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS). The IRLSSG aims to advance knowledge about the cause(s), pathogenesis, and clinical impact of RLS and related disorders, and is committed to the principles of open and full scientific communication and collaboration, peer review, full disclosure of potential conflicts of interest, and democratic governance of its organization and activities. The IRLSSG is also interested in providing scientific and medical information to professionals and the public regarding RLS and related disorders.

Restless Legs Syndrome Support Group
A southern Californian support group for those who suffer from restless leg syndrome that includes meeting dates, patient letters, consultations, and a resource for treatments. Located in Downey, CA 90241.
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