Restless legs syndrome: Clinical features and treatment

Eng King Tan, William G. Ondo

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations

Abstract

Restless legs syndrome (RLS), widely recognized as a definite clinical entity, has an estimated prevalence of 1 to 15% in different ethnic populations. However, it remains an underdiagnosed condition and its symptoms are frequently ascribed to stress and anxiety. Advancement in modern imaging techniques and clinical drug trials provide evidence of an impaired dopaminergic system in RLS. Management involves investigating and correcting treatable secondary causes, avoidance of aggravating factors, and pharmacologic therapy. Recent controlled trials have demonstrated the effectiveness of dopamine agonists such as pramipexole and pergolide. Additional research is needed to further elucidate the pathophysiology of RLS, through obtaining post-mortem specimens and refinement of neuroimaging and neurophysiologic techniques. Isolation of specific genetic loci in familial cases would enable better characterization of distinct clinical and genetic subsets of RLS and result in better understanding of this disease at the molecular level.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)397-403
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of the Medical Sciences
Volume319
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2000

Keywords

  • Pathophysiology
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • Treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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