RLS related to the nervous system?

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RLS related to the nervous system?

Post by Barbee »

I did notice something though. When I get a pedicure and the person giving it rubs the bottom of my feet with a brush or files my toe nails... I get a similar sensation... which makes me think. The feet are where the nerve endings are. Is RLS related to the nervous system?

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Post by Neco »

I don't think anyone can say for certain, but the nervous system is definitely involved in the process somewhere. This is evidenced by many drugs that help us. Benzo's and Opiates in particular act on the nervous system, and are central nervous system depressants, while drugs like Neurontin and Lyrica are used to treat neuropathic (nerve) pain.

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Post by coaster »

Barbee, if you're into doing research, check out "dopamine agonist" This is a term for a class of drugs that enhance the action of a neurotransmitter called dopamine. (a neurotransmitter is a chemical in the brain involved in transmitting nerve impulses. Sorry, I don't know your level of knowledge.) Mirapex and Requip are the two best-known examples. So, the answer is "yes" the nervous system is involved, but exactly how and what the cause is isn't know. We do know that drugs that either add dopamine (Sinemet) and enhance it (the agonists) do give some measure of relief to many RLS persons.

Your observation of the effect on the bottom of your feet is a good one, and is probably an example of a non-drug therapy called "counter-irritation" in which the nervous system is stimulated, thereby either overriding the RLS symptoms and causing them to be ignored by the brain (not known which, I don't think). An example of counter-irritation therapy that worked for me for a while years ago when my RLS was less severe was running cold water in the shower over my legs from the knees on down.
~ Tim ~
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