Restless Legs Syndrome

Friday, January 06, 2017

Restless legs syndrome is a condition characterized by a nearly irresistible urge to move the legs, typically in the evenings. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about this condition in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Restless legs syndrome is a condition in which your legs feel extremely uncomfortable while youre sitting or lying down. Restless legs syndrome may affect as many as 12 million Americans.

The sensation of restless legs syndrome lessens if you get up and move. People combat the sensation of restless legs in a number of waysby stretching, jiggling their legs, pacing the floor, exercising or walking. This compelling desire to move is what gives restless legs syndrome its name.

Doctors diagnose restless legs syndrome by listening to you describe your symptoms and by reviewing your medical history. Restless legs syndrome can be caused by peripheral neuropathy, iron deficiency, kidney failure, pregnancy or as side effects of certain medications.

The treatment includes identifying and treating any underlying medical cause, hot baths and stretching exercises, and avoiding caffeine and alcohol. If these techniques do not relieve the restless legs symptoms, there are new medications that have proven effective. Discuss this problem and treatment options with your physician.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.