Celiac disease is associated with restless legs syndrome

Leonard B. Weinstock, Arthur S. Walters, Gerard E. Mullin, Stephen P. Duntley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: Celiac disease may be associated with restless legs syndrome (RLS) because of an association with iron deficiency. Often, RLS negatively affects quality of life but may remain undiagnosed. This study evaluated the association between celiac disease and RLS. Results: The incidence of RLS among 85 patients with celiac disease was 35%, with a prevalence of 25% compared with 10% of spouses (P < 0.02). In 79% of patients with RLS and celiac disease, neuromuscular symptoms began during or after onset of gastrointestinal symptoms. Iron deficiency was present in 40% of celiac patients with active RLS compared with 6% of patients without RLS (P < 0.001). After 6 months of a gluten-free diet, RLS symptoms improved in 50% of 28 patients. Conclusion: Screening for celiac disease in patients with RLS is important since this commonly overlooked silent disease may be a correctable factor for some patients with idiopathic RLS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1667-1673
Number of pages7
JournalDigestive diseases and sciences
Volume55
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2010

Keywords

  • Anemia
  • Celiac disease
  • Iron deficiency
  • Restless legs syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Gastroenterology

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