Diabetes, Heart, and Cardiovascular Diseases News Chronicle.      Article 313

The Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) Was Linked To The Risk Of Mortality (Death) From Cardiovascular Disease In Women


Earlier studies were inconsistent in reporting the risk of all-cause mortality (death) due to cardiovascular diseases from restless leg syndrome (also known as Willis-Ekbom disease. WED). Those people who are affected with restless leg syndrome (RLS) may also be suffering from other diseases and with risk factors to cardiovascular diseases such as obesity and high blood pressure. This makes it difficult to identify the actual cause of cardiovascular mortality (death).

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Women with restless leg syndrome (RLS) are at a higher risk of death (mortality) due to cardiovascular diseases.

A study funded by the National Institutes of Health shows that the restless leg syndrome (RLS) could be a risk factor for mortality (death) from cardiovascular diseases, especially among older women. The researchers say that those women with physician-diagnosed restless leg syndrome (RLS) may likely to cause 43 percent higher risk of death (mortality) due to cardiovascular diseases (CVD) in a ten-year period when compared with normal people. The study also shows that the proportion of the risk of mortality (death) with cardiovascular diseases will increase with the duration of the restless leg syndrome (RLS).

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Researchers have found a very strong association between the restless leg syndrome and mortality when they excluded the health risks to other diseases and cardiovascular diseases. This study also shows that cardiovascular diseases may cause health risks along with insomnia to the people with restless leg syndrome (RLS).

Researchers have conducted a study on 57,417 women with an average age of 67 years. They used the Nurses' Health Study data for this purpose. But the researchers excluded those participants with other health conditions such as cardiovascular or heart diseases, cancer, high blood pressure, or renal failure. Between 2002 and 2012, they collected the information periodically from the participants such as restless leg syndrome (RLS) and other health information related medical and lifestyle factors.

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A ten-year follow-up study shows 6,448 deaths. The cause-specific mortality study shows a higher cardiovascular mortality (death) in people with restless leg syndrome (RLS) compared to people without the restless leg syndrome (RLS). The study did not find any association between the restless leg syndrome (RLS) and cancer deaths. But the study could not explain the mechanism behind cardiovascular deaths with restless leg syndrome (RLS).

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Researchers say that a further large-scale study is required to find out the clinical impact of the restless leg syndrome (RLS) on cardiovascular mortality (death). Researchers have used the Cox proportional hazards model in the current study for calculating the hazard ratios and adjusted the results with other chronic diseases, potential confounders and the age.

The lead author of the study was Xiang Gao, MD, Ph.D., an associate professor, Department of Nutritional Sciences, Pennsylvania State University, the United States. The study was published January 09, 2018, in the journal Neurology. Title of the article was "Prospective study of restless legs syndrome and total and cardiovascular mortality among women."
DOI: doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000004814

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Restless leg syndrome: The restless leg syndrome (RLS), also known as Willis-Ekbom Disease (WED) is sleep and a neurological sensory disorder, mostly affecting women and elderly people. Unpleasant to very painful feeling in the legs and urge to move legs is the main symptom of this disorder.

The restless legs syndrome will worsen with the age and can cause sleep disturbance. Between 4 and 29 percent of adults in Western Europe and Northern America and between 5 and 15 percent of the adults in the United States were affected by this disorder. There are treatments to help but there is no permanent cure for this disorder.


Published on March 14, 2018


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