Special Message from Donnica Moore, M.D.

As a medical expert and health advocate, Donnica Moore, M.D., understands Restless Legs Syndrome can have a major impact on people’s lives.

See what Dr. Moore has to say about RLS.

Special Video Message from Dr. Donnica Moore

Transcript

Hi, I’m Dr. Donnica Moore. As a health expert and patient advocate, I’m excited to be a part of the Choose Your Move campaign to help people better understand Restless Legs Syndrome, or RLS, and to urge those living with the disease to take action. RLS is a serious medical condition, but many people may not understand it. People living with RLS know symptoms can be extremely disruptive and unpredictable. RLS symptoms can interfere with sleep and make it difficult to sit still. In fact, many people with RLS report that symptoms interfere with routine activities that matter to them.

If you’re living with RLS, I want you to check out the information on ChooseYourMoveRLS.com. It’s a great resource to better understand RLS so that you can work in partnership with your doctor to find a treatment approach that works for you.

Choose your move and take control of RLS.

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More than a Nighttime Problem

Symptoms from Restless Legs Syndrome occur primarily at night. However, it’s important to remember that symptoms can be more than just a nighttime issue. RLS symptoms can occur during any period of rest, day or night. The uncomfortable sensations can interrupt you anytime you’re trying to relax or just sit still. In fact, some people with RLS have to avoid activities that require sitting still for long periods of time. See what some people with RLS are missing out on.

Diagnosis

There are four diagnostic criteria that a doctor will use to diagnose RLS. These can be described using the word URGE.

URGE to move the legs: unpleasant sensations in the legs and other body parts create a powerful urge to move them.

REST induced: the urge to move gets worse during inactivity – resting, sitting, or lying down.

GETS better with activity: relief is found in movement such as walking or stretching, but unpleasant sensations reappear shortly after stopping. Massaging or hitting the limbs can also relieve symptoms.

EVENING and night: the urge to move increases in the evening or at night, or occurs only in the evening or at night.

If you’re experiencing signs and symptoms, talk to your doctor. You may be referred to a neurologist or a sleep specialist, doctors who specialize in conditions that affect the nervous system and sleep. Your doctor can help find a treatment option that’s right for you. You can use a conversation builder tool to help you prepare for the conversation with your doctor.

urge

The Symptoms

The most common symptoms of RLS are uncomfortable sensations in the limbs. Here are some terms people with RLS use to describe their symptoms.

Coping

There are several things that people do to try to get relief from their RLS symptoms. A recent survey found that some tried walking, massage, cold water, or relaxation techniques. Distracting yourself by concentrating on a puzzle or reading a book may provide temporary help. You can also try making some adjustments to your routine, like getting more exercise and drinking less caffeine and alcohol.

Life with RLS

RLS can have a real impact on some peoples’ lives. In early 2012, Kantar Health did a survey of 335 adults with RLS who are currently on medication. Some highly symptomatic patients* reported the following.

Relationships

81%

said RLS symptoms impact their partner's life

60%

don’t sleep in the same bed as their spouse or partner

Activities

63%

have trouble relaxing at home

43%

avoid long car rides

24%

avoid going to the movies

Sleep

55%

have difficulty sleeping

28%

say their sleep is disturbed more than 25 nights a month

* Patients who define themselves as “moderate” to “severe” with daytime symptoms two or more times a week and/or nighttime symptoms two or more times a week.

Treatment

Prescription medicines can be helpful to manage moderate-to-severe RLS symptoms that occur two or more times a week. There are treatments for RLS.Click here to learn about one.

Indication

Neupro® (Rotigotine Transdermal System) is a patch that is used to treat moderate-to-severe primary Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS).

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

Neupro® contains a sulfite called sodium metabisulfite. Sulfites can cause severe allergic reactions that are life threatening to some people who are sensitive to sulfites. People with asthma are more sensitive to sulfites. Remove the patch right away and call your doctor if you have swelling of the lips or tongue, chest pain, or trouble breathing or swallowing.

Neupro® may make you fall asleep suddenly or without warning while doing normal activities, such as driving, which may result in accidents. Tell your doctor right away if this happens. Drinking alcohol or taking other medicines that cause drowsiness may increase your chances of becoming sleepy while using Neupro®. Do not drive, use hazardous machinery, or do other dangerous activities until you know how Neupro® affects you.

Neupro® can cause decreases in blood pressure, especially when you start or increase your dose. Increases in blood pressure and heart rate, and fainting, also can occur. If you faint or feel dizzy, nauseated, or sweaty when you stand up from sitting or lying down, tell your doctor.

Some patients using Neupro® get urges to behave in a way that is unusual for them, such as unusual urges to gamble or increased sexual urges and behaviors. If you or your family notices you are developing any unusual behaviors, talk to your doctor.

Neupro® may cause Restless Legs Syndrome symptoms to come back (rebound), become worse, or start earlier in the day.

Skin reactions may occur at the site where you apply Neupro®. Tell your doctor if you get a rash, redness, swelling, or itching that will not go away.

Avoid exposing the Neupro® patch you are wearing to heating pads, electric blankets, heat lamps, saunas, hot tubs, heated water beds, and direct sunlight. Too much medicine could be absorbed into your body. Also, do not wear Neupro® during procedures called magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or cardioversion because this could cause skin burns.

Tell your doctor if you have breathing problems, a sleep disorder, mental problems, high or low blood pressure, or heart problems; are pregnant or plan to become pregnant; or are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. Neupro® may not be right for you.

The most common side effects in people taking Neupro® for Restless Legs Syndrome are application site reactions, nausea, sleepiness, and headache.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Please see additional Patient Information about the Neupro® Patch. This information does not take the place of talking with your healthcare provider about your condition or your treatment.

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RLS Misconceptions

People are talking about RLS

We took to the streets to see what the public has to say about RLS. See what people actually think about this real neurological condition. Watch the video.

What is Your RLS IQ?

Transcript

“Hi I’m Dr. Donnica Moore. I’m excited to be a part of the Choose Your Move campaign because I want to help educate people about the true impact of Restless Legs Syndrome, or RLS, and encourage those with the condition to take action.

Unfortunately, RLS is often misunderstood, and many people don’t even consider it to be a serious medical condition. Unmanaged moderate-to-severe primary RLS can take a significant toll on those affected.

(Graphic – What does the public think about RLS?)

To better understand what people think about RLS, we took to the streets to hear what they’re saying about the condition and to clarify some misperceptions.  Keep watching to learn more.”

(Graphic - What Does RLS stand for?)

Male MOS – “RLS? I have no idea.”

Male MOS – “A registered listing service.”

Male MOS – “Research lab scientist”

(Graphic - Have you heard of Restless Leg Syndrome?)

Female MOS – “I feel like surely that is something everyone has, restless leg something.”

Male MOS – “That’s just nervous energy.”

Male MOS – “I’ve never heard of it.”

(Graphic - What are the symptoms of RLS?)

Male MOS – “Your legs don’t work anymore, basically paralyzed from the waist below.”

Male MOS – “Bouncing your legs up and down.”

Female MOS – “I feel like it’s more of an anxiety because I know tend to jitter my legs when I’m very, very anxious.”

(Graphic - What parts of the body are affected by RLS symptoms?)

Male MOS – “From the glutes all the way down to the foot…toes.”

Female MOS – “Perhaps all the legs, um maybe your hips and your pelvic muscle.”

Male MOS – “Lower portion of your body. The waist down.”

(Graphic - What time of day are RLS symptoms a problem?)

Female MOS – “Specifically in the evening when you trying to sleep or trying to relax and your tired and you can’t.”

Male MOS – “I think at night when somebody’s trying to go to bed.”

Female MOS – “Probably night just because people are on their feet all day.”

Dr. Moore:

“RLS is a neurological disorder that causes people to experience unpleasant sensations in their limbs. The exact cause of RLS is unknown, but some research suggests that it may be caused by an imbalance of a chemical in the brain called dopamine, which helps regulate the body’s movement.  The most common symptom is an uncomfortable sensation in the legs, often described as aching, itching, or tingling.  Many people think that only the legs are affected by RLS, but these uncomfortable sensations can also occur in the feet, arms, torso, or head.

Graphic - Is RLS a real or serious medical condition?)

Male – “No it’s not serious.“

Female – “It doesn’t sound like a real problem.”

Male – “I’m wondering if it’s a real, something real.”

Female – “Not like serious, but like medical condition.”

Female MOS – “That sounds funny I mean restless leg? That’s silly.”

(Graphic – Can RLS symptoms be treated?)

Male MOS – “Anything can be cured with your body, mind over matter.”

Male MOS – “No I don’t think there are any treatments available.”

Female MOS – “Maybe Physical therapy PT, just learning how to stretch your muscles and your legs?”

(What types of Doctors treat RLS?)

Female MOS – “I would think it would be a leg doctor.”

Male MOS – “Maybe a brain chemistry doctor.”

Male MOS – “Or a psychologist, maybe it’s like more in your head?”

Dr. Moore:

“People with moderate-to-severe RLS – when symptoms occur two or more times a week – are often unable to concentrate, have impaired memory, or fail to accomplish daily tasks, and may require treatment. While there is no specific test to diagnose RLS, if a person is experiencing symptoms, they should talk to their doctor. If necessary, a primary care physician may also refer a patient to a neurologist or sleep specialist for further evaluation.  The good news is that there are many treatment options available, including a prescription medicine approved by the FDA for moderate-to-severe primary RLS.”

(Graphic – Some final thoughts from Dr. Moore)

“As you can see, there are many misperceptions about the seriousness of RLS.  I hope this video clears up some of the misunderstandings.  Remember, if you’re experiencing RLS symptoms, choose your move and talk to your doctor, who can help you find the right treatment approach.  That’s the first step in taking control of RLS.”


About Neupro® in the U.S.

Neupro® (Rotigotine Transdermal System) is indicated for the treatment of moderate-to-severe primary Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS). For more information about Neupro visit www.neupro.com.


Important Safety Information

Neupro® contains a sulfite called sodium metabisulfite.  Sulfites can cause severe allergic reactions that are life threatening to some people who are sensitive to sulfites.  People with asthma are more sensitive to sulfites.  Remove the patch right away and call your doctor if you have swelling of the lips or tongue, chest pain, or trouble breathing or swallowing.

Neupro® may make you fall asleep suddenly or without warning while doing normal activities, such as driving, which may result in accidents.  Tell your doctor right away if this happens.  Drinking alcohol or taking other medicines that cause drowsiness may increase your chances of becoming sleepy while using Neupro®.  Do not drive, use hazardous machinery, or do other dangerous activities until you know how Neupro® affects you.

Neupro® can cause decreases in blood pressure, especially when you start or increase your dose.  Increases in blood pressure and heart rate, and fainting, also can occur.   If you faint or feel dizzy, nauseated, or sweaty when you stand up from sitting or lying down, tell your doctor.

Some patients using Neupro® get urges to behave in a way that is unusual for them, such as unusual urges to gamble or increased sexual urges and behaviors.  If you or your family notices you are developing any unusual behaviors, talk to your doctor.

Neupro® may cause Restless Legs Syndrome symptoms to come back (rebound), become worse, or start earlier in the day.

Skin reactions may occur at the site where you apply Neupro®.  Tell your doctor if you get a rash, redness, swelling, or itching that will not go away.

Avoid exposing the Neupro® patch you are wearing to heating pads, electric blankets, heat lamps, saunas, hot tubs, heated water beds, and direct sunlight.  Too much medicine could be absorbed into your body.  Also, do not wear Neupro® during procedures called magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or cardioversion because this could cause skin burns.

Tell your doctor if you have breathing problems, a sleep disorder, mental problems, high or low blood pressure, or heart problems; are pregnant or plan to become pregnant; or are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.  Neupro® may not be right for you.

The most common side effects in people taking Neupro® for Restless Legs Syndrome are application site reactions, nausea, sleepiness, and headache.

The Impact

RLS symptoms are uncomfortable and can sometimes be painful too. Symptoms may affect sleep, make it difficult to sit still and may have a serious impact on your life. That irresistible urge to move can strike at any time, making you feel like you have to get up and walk around.

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Myths and Realities of Restless Legs Syndrome

Restless Legs Syndrome (Willis-Ekbom disease) is often misunderstood and gets overlooked. Let's see how much you know about this neurological disorder called RLS. Read the five statements below and choose whether they are reality or myth. Good luck.

1. RLS symptoms never occur during the day.

Correct. Incorrect.

Symptoms can get worse in the evening and at night. However, symptoms can be present during the day–occurring any time you're trying to rest or sit still. For some it's just occasional. But for others, it can really disrupt their lives and may require medical attention.

2. RLS is not recognized by the medical community.

Correct. Incorrect.

Decades ago, RLS was thought to be a rare condition and the medical community gave it little to no attention. However, RLS is becoming increasingly recognized as a common and important disorder – one that deserves attention, especially since up to 23 million American adults may be affected.

3. RLS symptoms affect just the legs.

Correct. Incorrect.

For some people this is true, but in many cases RLS can be felt beyond the legs. People with RLS can feel unpleasant sensations in their arms, and sometimes, in severe cases, it can spread to the torso and even the face. Learn about the basics of RLS.

4. Walking alleviates the symptoms of RLS.

Correct. Incorrect.

Physical stimulation, like walking, can temporarily relieve some of the symptoms of RLS, but the symptoms most likely will return once you stop moving. On the other hand, sitting for long periods of time, like during long car rides or at the movies, or just trying to relax, can heighten symptoms. Learn what RLS may feel like.

5. RLS is often misdiagnosed.

Correct. Incorrect.

RLS can be misdiagnosed as other conditions, such as insomnia, neuropathic pain, skin irritation, arthritis, nocturnal leg cramps, and venous disorders. There are four key criteria for a clinical diagnosis of RLS.

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Resources

The following organizations provide updates on RLS research, and can help you find local support groups and events.

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