BOSTON—For patients with restless legs syndrome (RLS), the rotigotine transdermal patch improved scores on all but one of the items in the International RLS (IRLS) scale by approximately the same magnitude, researchers reported at the 26th Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies.
Compared with placebo, the rotigotine patch consistently decreased patients’ frequency of symptoms, symptom severity, and amount of time with symptoms, but, in one of two studies, did not increase the amount of relief that patients had from moving around. The latter item is “perhaps the most controversial” in the IRLS scale, according to Richard Allen, PhD, FAASM, Associate Professor of Neurology at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Symptom relief with movement is required for the RLS diagnosis, and thus this scale item cannot improve much with treatment.
The rotigotine patch also reduced the impact of RLS, as measured by the IRLS scale. Compared with placebo, the patch improved patients’ reported sleep, decreased daytime fatigue, improved patients’ ability to carry out daily activities, and decreased the severity of RLS-associated mood disturbance.