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Exergaming for Managing Restless Legs Syndrome in Multiple Sclerosis Patients

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Clinical trial shows that exergaming is helpful in treating restless leg syndrome in multiple sclerosis patients

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a sensory-motor disorder that affects many people, especially those with multiple sclerosis (MS). Exergaming, also known as active gaming or exerplay, is a type of physical activity that involves playing video games while exercising.

Unlike traditional video games that involve sedentary gameplay, exergaming combines gameplay with physical exercises, such as dance or sports. Exergaming may be an effective non-pharmacological therapy for improving symptoms of MS, such as balance, walking, fatigue, and cognitive functions.

Clinical Trial

Researchers investigated the effects of exergaming on RLS symptoms in MS patients. Thirty-one MS patients with RLS and thirty-four MS patients without RLS were randomly divided into an exergaming group and a control group. The researchers assessed various outcome measures, including RLS severity, fatigue impact, walking scale, anxiety and depression, physical activity, sleep quality, and quality of life.

Findings

After eight weeks of exergaming training, the researchers found that the RLS severity, anxiety level, sleep quality, walking, and balance functions improved significantly in the MS patients with RLS who participated in the exergaming group. In contrast, RLS severity increased in the control group. At the 8-week follow-up, the benefits of exergaming on RLS symptoms, quality of life, sleep quality, and walking capacity were still present. The exergaming group of MS patients without RLS showed significant improvement in gait and balance functions but lost the benefits after eight weeks of follow-up.

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Conclusion

Exergaming could be an effective non-pharmacological therapy for managing RLS severity, anxiety, sleep quality, gait, balance, and quality of life in MS patients with RLS. However, more research is needed to understand the long-term effects of exergaming on RLS symptoms and other aspects of MS. Exergaming may be a cost-effective and easily accessible therapy for MS patients with RLS who may find it challenging to engage in traditional forms of physical activity due to their symptoms.
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This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. CenTrial Data Ltd. does not take responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. Treatments and clinical trials mentioned may not be appropriate or available for all trial participants. Outcomes from treatments and clinical trials may vary from person to person. Consult with your doctor as to whether a clinical trial is a suitable option for your condition. Assistance from generative AI tools may have been used in writing this article.