Periodic Leg Movements During Sleep and Cardiovascular and/or Cerebrovascular Morbidity

Patrizia Congiu, Monica Puligheddu, Michela Figorilli, Raffaele Ferri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose of Review: To evaluate if periodic leg movements during sleep (PLMS) may be associated with increased cardiovascular or cerebrovascular morbidity Recent Findings: PLMS are accompanied by rises in hear rate and blood pressure and by important transient EEG changes indicating sleep fragmentation; in addition, PLMS have been related to elevated levels of inflammatory markers that are associated with increased cardiovascular and cerebrovascular risk and several reports have suggested that PLMS may play an important role in increasing cardiovascular risk, resulting in hypertension, cardiac ischemic disease, and cerebrovascular disease. Summary: Although a body of evidence suggests that PLMS are involved in increasing cardiovascular risk, additional studies are needed to establish the contributory role of PLMS to cardiovascular homeostasis and morbidity in patients with and without RLS, and to evaluate the role of the specific PLMS treatment to reduce the risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-64
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent Sleep Medicine Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2018


  • Blood pressure
  • Cardiovascular risk
  • Cerebrovascular risk
  • Heart rate
  • Periodic leg movements during sleep
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • Sleep
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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