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Restless Leg Syndrome Message Board

Restless Leg Syndrome Board Index

Hi Viper. Some people do report developing RLS for the first time after spinal injury or surgery. Similarly, people report RLS after withdrawing from opiates. In all cases it should pass. You probably are "pre-disposed" to RLS. The vast majority of people can injure their spine or withdraw from opiates and never feel so much as a twinge of RLS. It seems that people with RLS have lousy dopamine receptors. The receptors are the part of the brain that hurls dopamine down our spines from where it eventually relaxes our legs. So it's not so much a lack of dopamine but of good transport out of the brain to our peripheral nervous system (aka legs and arms). So spinal injuries can cause a bump in the road making it more difficult for the dopamine to get to our legs. And the opiates "down-regulate" our receptors making them ever worse...albeit temporarily. Lastly and most importantly is the fact that you are taking Celexa, an SSRI, which is notorious for worsening the symptoms of RLS or even triggering RLS.

Now for the remedies. Switching the Celexa to a more RLS friendly one such as Wellbutrin. Next is time. Your receptors will start to "up-regulate" with time provided you aren't taking any other substances which are known to worsen RLS such as anti-histamines, antacids, melatonin, statins, sugar substitutes...the list is very long. I get intermittent RLS, such as when I take a Benedryl which sometimes I have to. When I get RLS I take one iron tablet on an empty stomach, before bed. The kind of iron I take is called Easy or Gentle iron and it is highly bio-available. You can't buy it in the drug stores. The kind you buy in the drug store does not work for me. But some people take it with vitamin c and on an empty stomach and do get relief. If you find that you are taking it regularly you have to discuss with the doctor. For people who are anemic, iron can actually be a cure for their RLS. I am not anemic, and my iron stores are very healthy, yet that iron pill still works, albeit for one night. Other people have reported relief from potassium in the form of cream of tartar or tonic water that has quinine in it. Even a teaspoon of mustard in water...probably the curcurmin. Potassium, quinine and curcurmin are natural dopamine agonists. They cause a pop or "release" of dopamine which then relieves your RLS temporarily. There's no guarantee for any of these things but at least they're not expensive and readily available to you. The prescription dopamine agonists, that are prescribed for Parkinson's and RLS are a dead end. They down-regulate your receptors like the Norco and end up making you worse off in the long run. As a matter of fact, quinine is no different. It is a drug as far as I am concerned and in the long run can make things worse. Any and all of these things should just be used as a temporary solutions.

I've been doing some research to find things that "up-regulate" your receptors. Consistently under-eating or intermittent fasting will supposedly up-regulate your receptors. So will anaerobic exercise and possibly a substance called Uridine 5 monophosphate. Uridine is found in mother's milk and added to infant formula but it's still mad science in terms of RLS. And it is not cheap like iron bisglycinate or cream of tartar or tonic water. The cream of tartar works for me as well but it takes a whole teaspoon and it has to be on an empty stomach. A teaspoon exceeds the recommended daily allowance for potassium. 1/2 teaspoon is closer to the RDA. So I switch off between iron and the cream of tartar. The iron costs about $10 for a large bottle and the cream of tartar about $2.50. I bought the Uridine and it was about $20.

So there you have it. Please keep us posted.

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