Annals of Thoracic Medicine Official publication of the Saudi Thoracic Society, affiliated to King Saud University
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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 193-198

Prevalence of restless legs syndrome and associated risk factors among middle-aged Saudi population

1 Sleep Medicine and Research Center, Department of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Family and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Siraj Omar Wali
Associate Professor of Medicine, College of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Consultant in Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine, Director, Sleep Medicine and Research Center, King Abdulaziz University Hospital, P. O. Box - 21589, Jeddah - 80215
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: King Abdulaziz University for Science and Technology (KACST), Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1817-1737.160839

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Background and Aim: The prevalence of restless legs syndrome (RLS) in the general population ranges from 5 to 15%; however, locally, such data are scarce. The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of RLS in the middle-aged Saudi population. Methods : This was a cross-sectional study that was conducted from February 2013 to June 2013 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The target study population was Saudi school employees. Saudi employees aged 30-60 years were randomly selected and interviewed individually. Trained interviewers completed the Wisconsin Sleep Questionnaire, questions about demographics, the Epworth Sleepiness Scale to measure daytime sleepiness, and questions regarding symptoms of RLS based on the criteria defined by the International Restless Legs Syndrome Study Group (IRLSSG). Results: This survey revealed that 8.4% (95% confidence interval (CI): (7.35-9.45)) of the 2,682 participants (62.5% of them were males) had RLS. There was no age effect on the prevalence of RLS. RLS was found to be significantly associated with other sleep disorders, including excessive daytime sleepiness and habitual snoring. A univariate analysis revealed significant correlation of many factors with the RLS, including gender, consanguinity, snoring, diabetes, hypertension, asthma, chronic bronchitis, and smoking. However, when a multivariate logistic regression analysis performed, RLS continued to be associated with male gender, diabetes, asthma, and habitual snoring only. Conclusion: The prevalence of RLS is 8.4%, which is within the range reported by Western studies. However, unlike findings of most studies, RLS significantly affects males more than females. In addition, snoring, asthma, and consanguinity are potential new risk factors for RLS.

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