An overview of restless leg syndrome for the mental health professional

Shehzad Niazi, R. Robert Auger, Thomas D. Hurwitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Restless leg syndrome (RLS) is also known as Willis-Ekbom disease (WED). Discomfort in the extremities and an urge to move are characteristics of this common movement disorder. URGE (Urge to move, Rest induced, Gets better with activity, and Evening and night worsening) is a helpful mnemonic Diagnosis is based on clinical history using criteria proposed by the International RLS Study Group. Psychiatric disorders are comorbid with RLS/WED and psychotropic medications can affect RLS/WED symptomatology. It is important for mental health professionals to be familiar with this disease. RLS/WED is now a specific diagnosis in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth edition (DSM-V) as opposed to DSM-IV-TR, which had this included in the residual category of dyssomnia NOS (not otherwise specified). In this article, we provide an overview of RLS/WED for mental health professionals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-40
Number of pages6
JournalPsychiatric Annals
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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