Restless Leg Syndrome/Willis-Ekbom Disease Pathophysiology

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Restless leg syndrome/Willis-Ekbom disease has brain iron deficiency that produces excessive dopamine and known genetic risks, some of which contribute to the brain iron deficiency. Dopamine treatments work temporarily but may eventually produce further postsynaptic down-regulation and worse restless leg syndrome. This article includes sections focused on pathophysiologic findings from each of these areas: genetics, cortical-spinal excitability, and iron and dopamine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-214
Number of pages8
JournalSleep Medicine Clinics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015


  • Dopamine
  • Iron
  • PLMS
  • RLS augmentation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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