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RLS in haemodialysis

Clinical bottom line

The prevalence of RLS in patients on maintenance haemodialysis is 14%. Patients with RLS had significantly poorer sleep and quality of life.


Reference

I Musci et al. Restless legs syndrome, insomnia and quality of life in patients on maintenance dialysis. Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation 2005 20: 571-577.

Study

This was a population based study on patients on maintenance haemodialysis and on dialysis awaiting transplant in Budapest. All patients were asked to complete a battery of tests relating to restless legs, sleep, and quality of life. Demographic information was also collected.

Results

The final study population was 333 individuals, with an average age of 54 years. About half were men, and 22% had diabetes. The median time on dialysis was 34 months.

The prevalence of RLS was 14% (45/333). There was no difference between those with and without RLS in duration of haemodialysis, age or sex, diabetes, or serum albumin, ferritin, or phosphorus. Prevalence increased from about 8% in those with no comorbid conditions to about 22% in those with five or more comorbid conditions.

Patients with RLS had much worse sleep than those without RLS, both in distribution of sleep scores (Figure 1), and in specific symptoms like sleep initiation or daytime tiredness. Quality of life measures also tended to be worse in patients on haemodialysis with RLS.

Figure 1: Sleep quality and RLS prevalence in patients on haemodialysis with and without RLS

Comment

The prevalence of RLS in patients on maintenance haemodialysis is 14%. Patients with RLS had significantly poorer sleep and quality of life.