RLS and thyroid deficienty or cancer radiation

WED/RLS occurs more frequently in certain populations, including people with end-stage renal disease, women during pregnancy, and people with iron deficiency. Also, RLS/WED in the elderly and children brings other challenges. Sharing your experiences may be extraordinarily helpful to others.
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RLS and thyroid deficienty or cancer radiation

Postby bbest1010 » Tue Oct 27, 2009 9:26 pm

I've had RLS for five years now. According to a neurologist/sleep medicine doc I saw yesterday, the cause might be mild neuropathy due to thyroid deficiency resulting from radiation treatments for Hodgkin's Disease many years ago. Anyone else with a similar background?

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Postby ViewsAskew » Tue Oct 27, 2009 9:41 pm

It sounds like the doc is saying it might not be RLS, but be neuropathy instead? Or am in misinterpreting?
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Postby bbest1010 » Tue Oct 27, 2009 10:11 pm

the doc said that neuropathy is a cause of RLS.

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Postby Neco » Tue Oct 27, 2009 10:35 pm

Your doctor is wrong I'm afraid.

The top researchers still have no clue what causes RLS, and most of the promising research is related to dopamine and iron stores in the brain.

Neuropathy and RLS are two entirely different things, although they are both neurological conditions.

Also, it is easy to confuse RLS & Neuropathy as both can mimic each others symptoms.. for example, some people will feel a burning painful sensation, which could be RLS just as much as it could be Neuropathy.

It is also possible for people to have both conditions at the same time, and we have had several members here who were initially diagnosed with RLS but later it turned out to be Neuropathy.

The treatments for both do overlap in some areas, mainly opiate painkillers and anti-seizure medications Neurontin and Lyrica.

The key difference here is, do you have an irresistable urge to move? do you feel creepy crawlies or other indescribable, but not necesarrily painful symptoms? If you start moving do these symptoms dissapear and you no longer feel uncomfortable, but once you stop moving the symptoms and discomfort/urge to move returns almost immediately?

If this is the case, it is RLS.. If you simply have pain that makes it difficult for you to sit still or otherwise relax, it is more likely to be neuropathy..

Of course I am not a doctor, but the hallmark symptoms for diagnosing RLS are real easy to understand. Click the link in my signature for the Mayo Clinic Algorithm for RLS. It is produced by (of course) The Mayo Clinic, and both patients and doctors will find it easy to read and understand. It discusses various severities of RLS as well as how to diagnose them and attempt to treat them..

If your doctor can ask your questions related to diagnosis from this paper, and make a diagnosis of RLS based on your answers, then you have RLS. Even then you may still potentially have neuropathy as well.
Last edited by Neco on Tue Oct 27, 2009 10:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Wayne » Tue Oct 27, 2009 10:37 pm

Yes. I am in very similar situation. I had chemotherapy treatments for non-Hodgkins lymphoma back in 1982.

My neuro believes that my neuropathy is a long-term side effect of the chemo. I did some research and found that neuropathy is indeed a long-term side effect.

Even if I had known back then, I still would've taken the chemo. And here I am 27 years later and still alive.

I've written a narrative story of my experience but never posted it anywhere. Don't think it would be appropriate here.

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