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Giving Legs to Restless Legs: A Case Study of How the Media Helps Make People Sick

  • Steven Woloshin equal contributor mail,

    equal contributor Contributed equally to this work with: Steven Woloshin, Lisa M Schwartz

    To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: steven.woloshin@dartmouth.edu.

    X
  • Lisa M Schwartz equal contributor

    equal contributor Contributed equally to this work with: Steven Woloshin, Lisa M Schwartz

    X
  • Published: April 11, 2006
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.0030170
  • Published in PLOS Medicine

Reader Comments (3)

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Media also educates

Posted by plosmedicine on 31 Mar 2009 at 00:05 GMT

Author: Sharon Austin
Position: Homemaker, third-generation RLS sufferer
Institution: None - home
E-mail: mamagull@yahoo.com
Submitted Date: February 13, 2007
Published Date: February 14, 2007
This comment was originally posted as a “Reader Response” on the publication date indicated above. All Reader Responses are now available as comments.

Having read this article, then the references, I found it VERY disturbing that there was absolutely no effort made to research RLS itself. There are national and international research and support organizations. Talk to a neurologist and find out what the prevalence of this illness is.

My grandmother had RLS; 2 of her 3 daughters do, one of whom is my mother. All 3 of my siblings and I have it. My first episode happened when I was 11, 44 yrs ago. Mom has had it for over 50 yrs. We cannot go to a movie or play without having RLS interrupt and ruin the event. Mom, whose RLS acts up between noon and 7AM the next day, has severe sleep deprivation. She is a bit envious of the fact that I only deal with it during the daytime.

Until RLS became known by way of the commercials, there was no way to describe the symptoms to family or friends, much less our GP's. For DECADES we have been told "it is all in your head". Neurologists are aware of it, some more so than others, and are getting better at treating it.

I suggest that the authors speak to someone at www.RLS.org, as well as any of the neurologists listed on the website as specializing in RLS, then track down a few patients.

The only references that I can offer are myself, my family, my neurologist and the local RLS support groups.

Competing interests declared: I declare that I have absolutely no competing interests.