Toward a better definition of the restless legs syndrome

Arthur S. Walters, Michael S. Aldrich, Richard Allen, Sonia Ancoli‐Israel, David Buchholz, Sudhansu Chokroverty, Giorgio Coccagna, Christopher Earley, Bruce Ehrenberg, T. G. Feest, Wayne Hening, Neil Kavey, Gilles Lavigne, Joseph Lipinski, Elio Lugaresi, Pasquale Montagna, Jacques Montplaisir, Sarah S. Mosko, Wolfgang Oertel, Daniel PicchiettiThomas Pollmächer, Renata Shafor, Robert C. Smith, Wenche Telstad, Claudia Trenkwalder, Christian von Scheele, Arthur S. Walters, J. Catesby Ware, Marco Zucconi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A large International Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) Study Group has been formed. As its first task, the group has taken upon itself the role of definig the clinical features of the RLS. As minimal criteria for diagnosis, the group proposes the following four features: (a) desire to move the extremities, often associated with paresthesias/dysesthesias; (b) motor restlessness; (c) worsening of symptoms at rest with at least temporary relief by activity, and (d) worsening of symptoms in the evening or night. Other features commonly seen in RLS include sleep disturbance, periodic limb movements in sleep and similar involuntary movements while awake, a normal neurological examination in the idiopathic from, a tendency for the symptoms to be worse in middle to older age, and, in some cases, a family history suggestive of an autosomal dominant mode of inheritance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)634-642
Number of pages9
JournalMovement Disorders
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • Dysesthesias
  • Paresthesias
  • Periodic limb movements in sleep
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • Sleep disturbance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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