Evaluation and Treatment of Restless Legs Syndrome in the Primary Care Environment.

Journal Article (Review;Journal Article)

Restless legs syndrome/Willis-Ekbon disease (RLS/WED) is a common sensorimotor disorder characterized by an irresistible urge to move and is associated with an uncomfortable sensation typically in the lower extremities. Dopaminergic neurotransmission abnormalities, genetics, sleep deprivation, and iron deficiency all play key roles in the pathogenesis of primary RLS. Secondary RLS has been associated with other medical conditions and medication usage. A thorough subjective evaluation and complete neurologic examination are key in the diagnosis of RLS/WED. Treatment includes pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic approaches. Referral to a neurologist or sleep specialist should be considered if initial treatment plans are ineffective.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Smallheer, BA

Published Date

  • September 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 53 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 433 - 445

PubMed ID

  • 30100008

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1558-1357

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0029-6465

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.cnur.2018.04.010


  • eng