You may be surprised to learn that, "Restless legs syndrome (RLS) affects patients on Dialysis with about four times the prevalence of that seen in the general population," according to Dr. Daniel M. Keller. Needless to say, Restless Legs Syndrome is a common complication in the Chronic Kidney Disease Community especially those on Dialysis. Well, newly released research suggests that Restless Legs Syndrome may be more serious than just a passing disturbance and has been associated with increased risk of Stroke, Heart Disease and even "earlier death."
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Researchers of the VA Medical Center, the University of Tennessee (UT) Health Science Center, and the University of California, Irvine found a fourfold (400%) higher incidence of Stroke and Heart Disease in those with Restless Legs Syndrome. One patient said about Restless Legs Syndrome, "It's painful, and the hard part is that it lasts for a moment. It's a little twitch here and there and then it gets to the point where it's uncontrollable."
The theory is that the RLS condition can lead to consistent loss of sleep which may "directly curb longevity," and "set the stage for Heart Disease, as well as other problems, such as Diabetes or Depression," said Lead Researcher, Dr. Miklos Z. Molnar. Moreover, twitching and jerking during sleep have been linked to inflammation, and heart rate and high blood pressure issues. It is important to note that the Research Team did not directly connect Restless Legs Syndrome with life-threatening health conditions. In fact, it could be that Restless Legs Syndrome may result, in part, from other underlying health conditions, reported Sleep Review Magazine. Clearly, however, Restless Legs Syndrome should not be taken lightly.
Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients are often able to lessen symptoms through lifestyle changes involving diet, supplements, and exercise; or through massage and heat or ice therapy. Still, Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients should discuss any treatments with their Healthcare Teams. In extreme cases, patients may consider prescribed medication or changes in treatment types since Home Hemodialysis is considered to have less Restless Legs Syndrome complications than other treatment options.
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