A retired GP!: I too am a retired GP... - Restless Legs Syn...

Restless Legs Syndrome

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A retired GP!


I too am a retired GP, and knew very little about RLS until I had it and began to read about it. It started very mildly in My 30s and gradually became very severe. My son, who is a consultant neurologist in Oxford, suggested I start on Premipexine, which was the accepted treatment at that time, and it worked like magic for many years. Unfortunately, I then augmented, and it was no longer Restless Leg Syndrome but Restless Whole Body Syndrome ! He recommended I swap to gabapentin. I am on the max dose now, and still on a mild dose of Pramipexole, but I am getting good nights' sleep for the first time in years. If I get break through symptoms at all I find I can control them with codeine phosphate(which you can get over the counter, plus a clonazepam, which is a sleeping tablet. I only take these very rarely as one can get used to them and then they are ineffective. Gabapentin is certainly the most recommended drug now for severe RLS. it might help to look up a specialist scientific paper on the subject. Highlight the relevant bits to you and ask your GP if he would be prepared to read it. Be careful how you approach it, because it can be rather annoying when patients can bring web pages with them for the GP to read!

2 Replies

Thank you for this Hazel Butler. It is good for us to get the viewpoint of the GP occasionally. Poor Alison7 flies a lonely flag there.

I have found that my rls is fiendishly clever at outwitting my various forms of medication. They work for a while and then it starts to reassert itself.

I have come to the conclusion that it is optimal to remain at the lowest dose of a couple of treatments and when symptoms start to re-emerge it is time to discontinue those drugs and start a different regime. By alternating in this way, I seem to be able to stay one step ahead of the beast - most of the time.

For me the worst thing is to chase the symptoms with ever increasing doses of the treatment drugs. The legs always win that race and then I have a nasty withdrawal to cope with as well as bad symptoms.

The worst aspect about being informed about RLS is that when you see your GP you can appear to be telling the GP rather than listening to him/her. I am interested in your comment about codeine as I sometimes use this in a 30/500 mix with paracetamol to give mea bit more sleep when Gabapentin is wearing off

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