Men with Restless Leg Syndrome: You Can Die Early

Men, have you ever been lying in bed when your legs start to do the Harlem Shake, all on their own?  If you have, you could be at risk for dying early.

A new long-term study has found that men with restless leg sydrome (RLS) do seem to die younger.  Over 18,000 healthy men around the age of 67 were followed for eight years, 3.7% of whom had RLS, characterized as "an irresistible urge to move the legs and often causes leg sensations of burning, creeping, and tugging, which are usually worse at night," according to a story at

During the study, more than 2,700 of the men died, and of the people with RLS, "171, or 25 percent, died during the study, compared to 2,594, or 15 percent, of those who did not have RLS," newswise com reports.

The stats are even scarier.  The study found that men with RLS had a nearly 40 percent increased risk of death compared to men without RLS.  And differences in body mass index, lifestyle, chronic conditions, lack of sleep and other sleep disorders did not have much of an effect.

When the researchers excluded people with major chronic conditions such as cancer, heart disease and high blood pressure from the analysis, "the association between RLS and an increased risk of death rose to 92 percent higher than those without RLS," adds.

Here's the only good news:  the increased mortality rate seemed to be due to respiratory, thyroid or immune system problems.  If you have any of these, and also have RLS, it might make sense to see your doctor regularly.


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