Learn More About Restless Leg Syndrome

As Kalamazoo’s leading experts on restless leg syndrome, Advanced Vascular Surgery has helped countless people regain their sense of well-being. Using state-of-the-art equipment and cutting-edge technology to supplement our sixty plus years of combined surgical experience, we’re able to guide our patients through difficult and emotionally challenging times. Often, our patients are concerned that they may be facing a host of issues. One of the diseases that we regularly address is Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS), or Willis-Ekbom Disease. Today, we’re going to cover a few things that you should know about RLS.

Symptoms

RLS causes a strong, unique urge to move your legs paired with uncomfortable sensations. The sensations may vary from person to person but are often described as throbbing, itching, or crawling. One key component to recognizing the symptoms as RLS is that people experience a symptom-free period of time in the early morning, but symptoms worsen at night.

Causes

Unfortunately, most cases of RLS have unknown causes. Some genetic dispositions, including family history or a gene variant have been connected to RLS. A lot of research points to issues with the section of the brain controlling movement and utilizing dopamine as potential reasons for RLS development.

Diagnosis

Doctors use five criteria during an evaluation to clinically diagnose RLS:

  • An overwhelming urge to move the legs, often paired with uncomfortable sensations
  • Urge begins or worsens during periods of rest or inactivity
  • Urge is partially or wholly relieved by movement
  • Urge either starts or noticeably worsens later in the day
  • No other medical or behavioral condition known to cause any of the above four features

Treatment

There are several ways your doctor may treat Restless Leg Syndrome. They include lifestyle changes, iron supplements, anti-seizure medication, dopaminergic agents, and other prescription medications. Every case is different, and your doctor will develop a unique treatment program based on your case, your medical history, and any other ailments.

While there is no known cure for RLS, the medical field continues to research and advance options for care and treatment. Proper care and diagnosis is the best bet to help people with RLS take control of the disease, and we can help – schedule an appointment today!