Sleep apnea syndrome and restless legs syndrome in kidney transplant recipients


1 Department of Nephrology, School of Medicine, Isfahan Kidney Disease Research Center, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Internal Medicine, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


Background: This study was aimed to evaluate the prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and restless legs syndrome (RLS) in patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) after kidney transplantation.
Materials and Methods: Two hundred kidney transplant recipients were enrolled in this cross-sectional study. Data on age, gender, etiology of ESRD, history of previous kidney transplantation, serum creatinine, and the presence or absence of OSA and RLS were collected. Symptoms of RLS were identified using the RLS questionnaire which was completed by the patients. The Berlin questionnaire and polysomnography were used for diagnosing OSA.
Results: The mean age of the studied patients was 45.86 ± 10.24 years. The prevalence of OSA was 26% (52 of 200 studied patients) and of RLS was 51.5% (103 of 200 studied patients). Majority of the patients with high-risk OSA were male and significantly older than the patients with low-risk OSA (P < 0.05). The prevalence of RLS was higher in patients with high-risk OSA and a higher level of creatinine compared to that in those with a low risk of OSA (P < 0.0001). Level of creatinine in patients with positive RLS was significantly higher than in those with negative RLS (P < 0.0001). OSA was observed in almost 42% of patients with positive RLS, compared to 9% of patients with negative RLS (P < 0.0001).
Conclusion: In summary, our results indicate that the prevalence of OSA and RLS in kidney transplant recipients was higher than in the general population. Also, there was a significant association between OSA and RLS in these patients.


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