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Neurology. 2001 Jan 23;56(2):263-5.

MRI measurement of brain iron in patients with restless legs syndrome.

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  • 1Department of Neurology at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center and Hopkins Sleep Disorders Center, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA.


Brain iron insufficiency in the restless legs syndrome (RLS) has been suggested by a prior CSF study. Using a special MRI measurement (R2'), the authors assessed regional brain iron concentrations in 10 subjects (five with RLS, five controls). R2' was significantly decreased in the substantia nigra, and somewhat less significantly in the putamen, both in proportion to RLS severity. The results show the potential utility of this MRI measurement, and also indicate that brain iron insufficiency may occur in patients with RLS in some brain regions.

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