Can RLS begin because of injury to your knee(s)?

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Can RLS begin because of injury to your knee(s)?

Post by Eric »

I hyper-extended both of my knees about 7 years ago and tore the ACL in both of them. I underwent ACL reconstruction in the left, and it is doing relatively great. The right one never saw any surgery and still gives me some problems to this day. I some times feel the need/urge to move my legs quite frequently or change leg positions while sleeping. A pillow between the knees and shifting from sleeping on my left side to my right side and back again is quite the norm for me, all just to find comfort in my legs. I almost all the time have a throbbing in my right knee that extends down into my calf that is relieved every time I move my leg around. Walking tends to relieve some pain until they ache from walking. I guess I can term my "pain" more as an "ache" that never goes away, but is temporarily relieved by movement.

Now, I am new to this "RSL"...and have read that it is a brain/neurological disorder. My question is, can it be a result of trauma/injury to an area of the body, such as my knees?

I remember my grandmother sitting and rubbing her legs because, as she would say, "They won't stay still." She called it the "Heeby Jeebies". I also remember her taking an over the counter medicine called "Q-Vel".

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Post by Heronak »


While I can't say whether or not you have RLS, I do know that my RLS, which I've had my entire life, is worse in my left leg and has gotten progressively worse after each knee surgery (9, now). I believe trauma/surgery can definately impact RLS, and I think there are others here who have had increased RLS from back trauma and/or surgery.

The throbbing in your right knee which radiates down could just be the knee trauma, but I've never had painful RLS (thankfully). Someone else can chime in on that. My knee pain (osteoarthritis) certainly was worse when I didn't move my joint, and was temporarily better when moving, but that wasn't RLS.

For what it's worth, this is only my experience. You may very well have both knee pain and RLS. Read more about it on this site, and you may figure it out. Best,


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Post by ksxroads »

Dear Eric,

The sticky posts under New to RLS has excellent information regarding RLS. As a child I had many episodes they called *growing pains*. Well I am in my 50s and I still have growing pains! *BG* Mine affects the arms as well as the legs. The ache is a deep in the bone type of ache/pain as well as electrical current type of sensations. Massage can never get to the right spot!

There are 4 criteria used to diagnose RLS. 1. You have an uncontrollable urge to move your legs, sometimes along with uncomfortable creepy-crawly feelings. 2. Your symptoms are worse when resting. 3. Symptoms are relieved by movement. 4. Symptoms are worse in the evening usually between 10pm - 3am.

It is probable that you have more than just RLS going on due to your previous injuries. A good indicator that your RLS may be genetic is that your grandmother's reference to the Heeby Jeebies.

Learn what you can, ask questions. There are many good people here to help you.

*********Positive Thoughts********

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