29A. Restless-legs syndrome

Definition

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a waking sensorimotor disorder characterised by a complaint of a strong, nearly irresistible urge to move the legs, especially during the night, potentially impairing sleep.

Most cases are familial, but it can also be secondary to iron deficiency, uraemia, spinal cord disease, neuropathy, etc.

Clinical features

Unpleasant sensations in the legs are present, which give a strong urge to move them.

The symptoms are worse at rest, alleviated with movement, and predominant in the evening or night.

Diagnosis and evaluation

It’s important to exclude iron deficiency in patients with RLS.

Treatment

Dopamine agonists before sleep are effective. The underlying disease should be treated, if present.


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29B. Conversion disorders

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