Sleep disorders extend far past snoring. While interruptions and obstructions of the respiratory system can greatly affect your sleep, disorders associated with the nervous system are considered sleep disorders as well. Periodic Limb Movement  Disorder or PLMD can cause interruptions in one’s sleep much like a respiratory issue can.

What is Periodic Limb Movement Disorder?

PLMD is characterized by frequent and repetitive movements of the limbs that happen only while is asleep. The word “periodic” in this case means that the movements happen specific and deep therefore deeming it a sleep disorder. PLMD is not the same thing as restless leg syndrome but some patients with RLS can also experience PLMD. The primary cause of PLMD is unknown, however, it can come secondary from another illness.

What are Symptoms of Periodic Movement Disorder?

Many people who have PLMD may not be aware of the leg movements. Patients suffering from this disorder often notice the fatigue from disruptive sleep however their partners are the ones who notice the movement. Movements can include one or both legs and can range from slight jerking to more dramatic kicking. The movements are characteristically rhythmic and repetitive.

What Patients Are Saying

I have been dealing with extremely weird problems with my right ear for about two and a half months. After being ignored at my regular physicians office, I decided to see Dr. Schwartz ( Swartz) and I am so happy I did. The hearing test was thorough and I received the results immediately after which gave me relief. The assistant was so nice and made me feel like she was truly listening to me. I loved how she relayed everything to the doctor before he came in. Because of this, He gave me answers and set up a game plan immediately. I have never felt so taken care of! I truly felt important and heard. Thank you everyone in the office for being so amazing!

I recently had to find a new ENT after my employer changed my insurance. I have a complicated health history so it can be daunting to find a new provider that you trust. I was very pleased with Dr. Picerno – she was kind, patient and very thorough! I’m so happy to have found her! I also met with Amelia, an audiologist, and she was also awesome!

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Diagnosis & Treatment of Periodic Movement Disorder

There are no lab tests capable of diagnosing PLMD. The best way to diagnose this sleep disorder is through an in-office evaluation here in Denver or Lone Tree, CO. After you have had your initial evaluation, your doctor may ask you to do a sleep study to collect more information. The main treatments for PLMD include oral medication that will either reduce movement or possibly help the patient sleep through interruptions.

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If you are located in the Denver and Lone Tree area and you or your partner are having trouble sleeping due to constant movement, give us a call to schedule an office evaluation. Associates of Otolaryngology is ready to help you find your individual treatment plan. 



AOO | ENT Specialist of the Rockies is a practice that has been serving the Denver area for over 40 years. This group of board-certified physicians has exceptional experience treating multi-generational families and meeting their needs in ENT services, sleep health, sinus and allergy treatment, hearing treatment, and facial plastic surgery. Our team includes ENT physicians, specialty-trained nurses, audiologists, and plastic surgeons. In addition to outstanding routine care, our team is available 24/7 for emergencies

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