Association of multiple sclerosis with restless legs syndrome and other sleep disorders in women

Y. Li, K. L. Munger, S. Batool-Anwar, K. De Vito, A. Ascherio, X. Gao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: To assess the association of multiple sclerosis (MS) with concurrent restless legs syndrome (RLS) and daytime sleepiness. We also prospectively examined whether women with MS had an increased risk of developing RLS during 4 years of follow-up. Methods: The main analysis was based on a cross-sectional study of 65,544 women (aged 41-58 years) free of diabetes, arthritis, and pregnancy, who were participating in the Nurses' Health Study II cohort. Participants were considered to have RLS if they met 4 RLS diagnostic criteria recommended by the International Restless Leg Syndrome Study Group and had restless legs -5 times/month. MS was self-reported and confirmed by medical record review. Results: Among women with MS, the prevalence of RLS and severe RLS (15± times/month) were 15.5% and 9.9% in 2005, respectively, relative to 6.4% and 2.6% among women without MS. After adjustment for potential confounders and the presence of other sleep disorders, women with MS had a higher likelihood of having RLS (odds ratio [OR] = 2.72, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.89-3.93), severe RLS (OR = 4.12, 95% CI 2.65-6.42), and daily daytime sleepiness (OR = 2.11, 95% CI 1.31-3.42) compared with women without MS. Among the 172 women who had MS and were free of RLS in 2005, 9 developed RLS (5.2%) during a 4-year period and all had severe RLS. The adjusted relative risk of severe RLS was 3.58 (95% CI 1.53-8.35), comparing women with MS at baseline with those without MS. Conclusion: Women with MS had a significantly higher prevalence of RLS and daytime sleepiness and an increased risk of developing RLS in the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1500-1506
Number of pages7
JournalNeurology
Volume78
Issue number19
DOIs
StatePublished - May 8 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Neurology

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