Welcome ! I'm Dr. Ahmad and I will be pleased to offer help.. email me: ad_icare@yahoo.com أهلا و سهلا: يسعدنا إنضمامك لنا من خلال صفحتنا على الفيس بوك: استشارة صحية

Restless leg syndrome

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Dear reader, 
i would like to welcome you in here. Today we have an important post about "Restless leg syndrome" which is a common syndrome over the world.

What is Restless leg syndrome ?
It is a condition where you feel uncomfortable during sitting or lying down. You feel like getting up and starting to move around, which will cause a temporary relief to the unpleasant sensation.
It is a neurological movement disorder which is accompanied with an uncomfortable sensation in the limbs and an urge to move them when at rest.

You should know about it because it is unrecognised and under-diagnosed by many doctors. Besides it can be incorrectly labelled as anxiety.

Many patients will describe the uncomfortable sensation as one of the following:
Pulling,   Creepy,   Aching,   Burning,   Crawling,   Tingling,   Painful,   Cramping,   Itchy  

The diagnosis of Restless leg syndrome is made when the following criteria are present:
1. Urge to move the legs
2. Temporary relief with movement 
3. Onset or worsening of symptoms at rest or inactivity
4. Worsening or onset of symptoms in the evening and at night
Now a question will come up: 
                   What causes Restless leg syndrome ?
1. Primary:
This type occurs at any early age and there no underlying cause has been identified

2. Secondary:
This type means that the syndrome developed secondary to an existing condition like:
- iron deficiency
- pregnancy
- end stage renal disease
- peripheral neuropathy
- diabetes mellitus
- fibromyalgia

Does restless leg syndrome affect our daily life ?
Yes it does, because it will lead to poor sleep, inability to relax, poor concentration, depression

Who is more likely to get restless leg syndrome ? 
Women tend to be more likely to be affected than men. Besides the advanced age is another risk factor

How is this syndrome treated ?
There are pharmacological and non-pharmacological measures.

Non-pharmacological: Preventive and symptom control

Preventive measures:
1. Avoid alcohol, caffeine, nicotine
2. Avoid medications that may aggravate this syndrome as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, anti-histaminics, anti-emetics and calcium channel blockers
3. Be active at evening
4. Good sleep hygiene

Symptom control:
1. Walking and stretching
2. Massaging
3. Mental alerting activities
4. Relaxing

Pharmacologically, drugs used in this syndrome are:
1. Iron
2. Dopamine agonist
3. Dopaminergic agonist
4. Anticonvulsants

This is an interesting syndrome and i think researches will show up a lot of information about this syndrome in terms of the causes and more better ways to treat it.

Last and not least, i would like to thank our facebook member, Linda, who suggested this topic to be posted today.

Thank you all for reading this and i hope you benefited from it.   


  1. I had restless leg syndrome years ago as a side effect of Prozac. I didn't know at the time that there was anything that could be done about it. I didn't even know it had a name. Most of it went away when I was off the Prozac. Still crops up now and then, but not the problem it used to be.

  2. You are right and there are many people like you. And that's why this syndrome needs more awareness

  3. I had restless leg syndrome. I put a bar of soap under my sheets at the foot of my bed and in three days it was gone. I heard you can either open the soap or keep the wrapper on it either way it will work. I opened mine and you replace it in a few months.

  4. Dear Dr. Ahmed, I have the above sensations, but I had DVT due to Anti Thrombin III definc.(Heredity) I am on Warfarin (life time) but my leg is swelling all the time & hurts me as I feel it heavy.
    Can you advise me about how to reduce this annoying feeling?
    Best Regards

  5. Hello Caroline,

    Do you have diabetes or fibromyalgia or neuropathy ?

  6. I've always had problems with restless legs (even as a child) but thank you as recently it has bothered me during sleep. I will cut out all caffeine and alcohol, and pay attention to see if it improves.

  7. No Doctor, not that I know, but I had Diabetes during pregnancy only.

  8. Terri:
    i hope it will improve with avoidance of alcohol and caffeine

  9. Caroline:
    If you feel that this syndrome is disturbing to you then you need to see your doctor and don't worry because in many cases iron therapy gives good results.
    Besides you need to take care that some women who have got diabetes during pregnancy, can get diabetes later on. So keep checking your blood glucose routinely

  10. Thank you Dr. Ahmad, my last result of IRON was 13 when the reference range unit is (11 - 31)umol/L
    So what is your advise with this result? and medication if applicable.
    As for the Insulin it was 15.91 when the range is (1.9 - 23) ulu/ml.
    P.S.: If you need to see all the results, I can send it to you as I did full profile with all hormones too.
    Thank you doctor for you effort.

  11. Ok, was all the other tests normal ? If something is not in range please write its name and its value

    You welcome

  12. Thank you Dr. Ahmad for your effort.
    Yes there were some up & downs results as follows:

    Test Descrpt. Result Ref. range unit
    1- Creat 49 (60 - 120) umol/L
    2- Cal. Osmolality 272 (280 - 300) mmol/kg
    3- TChol 5.24 (1.5 - 5.2) mmol/L
    4- TG 2.86 (0.4 - 1.7) mmol/L
    5- TSH 0.19 (0.27 - 4.2) ulu/mL
    6- RBC 5.64 (3.8 - 4.8)
    7- MCV 74.3 (83 - 101)
    8- MCH 24.3 (27 - 32)
    9- RDW 15 (11.6 - 14.6)
    10- Lymphocytes.# 3.3 (1 - 3)
    11- Basphils. # 0 (0.02 - 0.1)

    Best Regards,

  13. You need to see an internist because your cholesterol and triglycerides are slightly raised above normal. Did your doctor see this report ?

  14. Actually the doctor (Endocrine clinic) asked for all the above + hormones, but he said he needed time as not all the medications are applicable to me due to the Anti Thrombine defc.
    Will see him after two months hope to find a medication.
    Thank you Dr. Ahmad for your efforts.

  15. Wish you the best of luck. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
    You welcome

  16. I have type 2 diabetes, and have all the symptoms above! I keep forgeting to talk to my doctor about it, i sleep horrible, awake every hour. But I do find that if I take potasium before bed it is better.

  17. You need to talk to your doctor about it because it can be very disturbing and can interfere with your sleep

  18. I'm 52 and have suffered from restless leg syndrome for as long as I can remember right from a small child . I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes a month ago and have been trying to get my head around what's good/not good to eat re: controling my glucose level , since Friday midday I've had a stiffness and aching in both legs that is making me walk a little funny . I gave up smoking at Easter after being a fairly heavy smoker for almost 40 years ... I don't know if that has any bearing on anything - withdrawal etc .

  19. Hello,
    what about your blood glucose level now ? Is it within normal ?
    Could you specify what joints are aching ? Since when is the pain present ?

  20. At the moment I only have the urine test strips which have been reading between 0 and 4 doing a daily test over the last 3 weeks, I will be attending my 2nd diabetics meeting on Tuesday 3rd Aug to hopefully learn more about diet which in turn should help my glucose levels.
    The ache is in all my muscles , buttocks , thigh and calf and also stiff in all joints , hip , knee, ankle and aching feet also .

  21. Iam sure that this meeting will be of great help to you. Don't worry about it because you only need to know how to live with it



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