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A doctor and a nurse speak with a patient as she prepares for her sleep study.

Restless Leg Syndrome

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is a neurologic movement disorder characterized by disruptive intense urges to move and by uncomfortable sensations in the legs. Suffers often describe their feelings as "creepy crawler" feelings in their legs. These sensations can disturb sleep and cause sleep deprivation. RLS occurs when someone is awake and is commonly associated with Periodic Limb Movement Disorder (PLMD), which occurs during sleep. PLMD is a rhythmic pattern of legs and arms kicking, twitching and or moving during sleep.

Treatment Strategies

The diagnosis of  RLS is made by a complete medical history and physical exam by a neurologist or sleep specialist. The treatment for RLS requires the establishment of good sleep habits, treating any underlying associated medical conditions, various medication treatments, and comfort strategies to reduce the symptoms of RLS. Sometimes testing, such as blood work, X-rays and or an overnight sleep study, may be done.

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