Restless legs syndrome overview

Jump to navigation Jump to search

Restless legs syndrome Microchapters


Patient Information


Historical Perspective




Differentiating Restless legs syndrome from other Diseases

Epidemiology and Demographics

Risk Factors


Natural History, Complications and Prognosis


Diagnostic Study of Choice

History and Symptoms

Physical Examination

Laboratory Findings



Echocardiography and Ultrasound

CT scan


Other Imaging Findings

Other Diagnostic Studies


Medical Therapy


Primary Prevention

Secondary Prevention

Cost-Effectiveness of Therapy

Future or Investigational Therapies

Case Studies

Case #1

Restless legs syndrome overview On the Web

Most recent articles

Most cited articles

Review articles

CME Programs

Powerpoint slides


American Roentgen Ray Society Images of Restless legs syndrome overview

All Images
Echo & Ultrasound
CT Images

Ongoing Trials at Clinical

US National Guidelines Clearinghouse

NICE Guidance

FDA on Restless legs syndrome overview

CDC on Restless legs syndrome overview

Restless legs syndrome overview in the news

Blogs on Restless legs syndrome overview

Directions to Hospitals Treating Psoriasis

Risk calculators and risk factors for Restless legs syndrome overview

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]Mohamadmostafa Jahansouz M.D.[2]


Restless legs syndrome is a condition that is characterised by an irresistible urge to move one's legs. It is poorly understood, often misdiagnosed, and believed to be a neurological disorder. Many people tap their feet or shake their legs resulting from a nervous tic, consumption of stimulants, drug side-effects or other factors; this is usually innocuous, unnoticed, and does not interfere with daily life, quite distinct from Restless Leg Syndrome.

It is sometimes mistakenly called "Ekbom's syndrome," but that is an entirely different condition that shares part of the Wittmaack-Ekbom syndrome eponym: delusional parasitosis, as both syndromes were described by the same person, Karl-Axel Ekbom. [1]

Historical Perspective

In a 1945 publication titled 'Restless Legs', Karl-Axel Ekbom described the disease and presented eight cases used for his studies.[2]

Earlier studies were done by Thomas Willis (1622-1675) and by Theodor Wittmaack.[1] Another early description of the disease and its symptoms were made by George Miller Beard (1839-1883).[1]


As with many diseases with diffuse symptoms, there is controversy among physicians, if RLS is a distinct syndrome. The US National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke publishes an information sheet [3] characterizing the syndrome but acknowledging it is a difficult diagnosis. Some physicians doubt that RLS actually exists as a legitimate clinical entity, but believe it to be a kind of "catch-all" category, perhaps related to a general heightened sympathetic nervous system (SNS) response that could be caused by any number of physical or emotional factors. Other clinicians associate it with lumbosacral spinal subluxations and life stress.

Epidemiology and Demographics

Many doctors express the view that the incidence of restless leg syndrome is exaggerated by manufacturers of drugs used to treat it.[4] Other physicians consider it a real entity that has specific diagnostic criteria. [5]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Template:WhoNamedIt
  2. Ekbom, K.-A. Restless legs: a clinical study. Acta Med. Scand. (Suppl.) 158: 1-123, 1945.
  3. Restless Legs Syndrome Fact Sheet
  4. Woloshin S, Schwartz L (2006). "Giving legs to restless legs: a case study of how the media helps make people sick". PLoS Med. 3 (4): e170. PMID 16597175.
  5. Montplaisir J; Boucher S; Nicolas A; Lesperance P; Gosselin A; Rompré P; Lavigne G (1998). Movement disorders. 13 (2): 324–9. PMID 9539348 Missing or empty |title= (help)

Template:WH Template:WS