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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 23

of 'Sleepwalking and other parasomnias in children'

23
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Periodic limb movements in sleep and iron status in children.
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Simakajornboon N, Gozal D, Vlasic V, Mack C, Sharon D, McGinley BM
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Sleep. 2003;26(6):735.
 
STUDY OBJECTIVES: To assess potential relationships between serum iron and ferritin levels and the severity of periodic limb movement in sleep (PLMS) in a pediatric population, and to evaluate the response to supplemental iron therapy.
DESIGN: A prospective study of all consecutively diagnosed children with PLMS (periodic limb movement index [periodic limb movements per hour of total sleep time, [PLMI]>5) who underwent overnight polysomnographic evaluation. In all patients, complete blood count and serum iron and ferritin levels were obtained. Patients with serum ferritin concentrations less than 50 microg/L were prescribed iron sulfate at 3 mg/kg of elemental iron per day for 3 months. At the end of treatment, serum iron and ferritin levels and sleep studies were repeated.
SETTING: Comprehensive Sleep Medicine Center, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, and Kosair Children's Hospital Sleep Medicine and Apnea Center.
PATIENTS: Twenty boys and 19 girls with PLMS with a mean age of 7.5 +/- 3.1 years.
INTERVENTION: Iron therapy.
RESULTS: Twenty-eight (71.8%) patients had ferritin levels less than 50 microg/L. There was no significant correlation between serum ferritin concentration and PLMS severity as indicated by the PLMI (r = -0.19). The PLMI in patients with serum ferritin levels less than 50 microg/L (29.9 +/- 15.5 PLM/h) was higher than in patients with serum ferritin levels greater than 50 microg/L (21.9 +/- 11.8 PLM/h); however, the difference did not achieve statistical significance (P = 0.09). In contrast, serum iron was significantly correlated with PLMI (r = -0.43, P<0.01). Indeed, patients with serum iron concentrations less than 50 microg/dL had a higher PLMI compared to patients with serum iron concentrations greater than 50 microg/dL (42.8 +/- 18.3 PLM/h and 23.1 +/- 10.1 PLM/h, respectively; P = 0.02). Twenty-five out of the 28 PLMS patients with serum ferritin levels less than 50 microg/L received treatment with iron sulfate, and 19 (76%) responded favorably. Among the responders to iron therapy, PLMI decreased from 27.6 +/- 14.9 PLM per hour to 12.6 +/- 5.3 PLM per hour after 3 months of iron supplements (P<0.001) and coincided with increases in serum ferritin levels (pre: 40.8 +/- 27.4 microg/L vs post: 74.1 +/- 13.0 microg/L; P<0.001).
CONCLUSIONS: In children, the presence of PLMS is frequently associated with low serum iron and a tendency toward low serum ferritin levels. In addition, iron therapy is associated with clinical improvement in most of these patients.
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Department of Pediatrics, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana 70112, USA. nsimaka@tulane.edu
PMID