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High prevalence of restless legs syndrome among patients with polycytemia vera treated with venesectio.

Medical Oncology 2010 March
In order to examine whether symptoms of iron deficiency anemia are due to the iron deficiency itself or the associated anemia, 34 patients with polycytemia vera (PV) treated with venesectio, who had iron deficiency but normal hemoglobin (Hb) levels, were given a questionnaire covering symptoms of iron deficiency including the international RLS-scale and the Fact-fatigue quality of life scale (QoL). We found a prevalence of pica of 11.7%, mouth paresthesias of 5.8% and rest-less legs 29.6% (RLS "normal" prevalence 10%). Thus, the prevalence of RLS is significantly higher in our population. We also saw a significant difference in QoL between patients with and without RLS (P = 0.015) and QoL correlated with the severity of RLS (R = 0.85). In conclusion, RLS seems to be a frequent and serious problem for PV patients treated with venesectio according to standard guidelines.

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