Sleep Med Psychophysiol.  2003 Jun;10(1):26-31.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Restless Leg Syndrome and Periodic Limb Movement of Sleep

  • 1Yong-In Psychiatric Research Institute, Yong-In, Korea.


Restless leg syndrome (RLS) and periodic limb movement of sleep (PLMS), often concurrent, come under diagnosed disorders of sleep and treatable condition. RLS symptoms are evoked in the limbs at rest and increase in the evening and during the night. PLMS is characterized by periodic episodes of repetitive limb movements caused by muscle contractions during sleep. RLS is often associated with a sleep complaint and PLMS. Both RLS and PLMS represent one of the most commonly encountered sleep disorders in a primary care setting. The circadian rhythm and the presence of PLMS cause sleep disturbances in RLS. The emphasis on pathophysiology includes consideration of central nervous system localization, neurotransmitter, and the role of iron metabolism. Dopaminergic agents are considered the treatment of choice for RLS and PLMS. With proper diagnosis and effective treatment patients' ability to fall asleep and maintain sleep improves, and their sense of well being increases.


Restless leg syndrome; Periodic limb movement of sleep; Diagnosis; Treatment
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