American Academy of Sleep Medicine

View all recommendations from this society

Released December 2, 2014; Updated December 21, 2021

Don’t use polysomnography to diagnose restless legs syndrome.

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a neurologic disorder that is a clinical diagnosis based on a patient’s description of symptoms and additional clinical history. Polysomnography is not necessary to make this diagnosis. If performed for other reasons, a polysomnogram that shows periodic limb movements of sleep is supportive of a diagnosis of RLS.


These items are provided solely for informational purposes and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a medical professional. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their physician.

How The List Was Created

The Executive Committee of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine developed 21 candidate recommendations for ways in which medical waste could be minimized while care for patients with sleep disorders is improved. Members of the Executive Committee then voted to assign priorities to each, and the top five were selected. Final wording of the five statements were approved by the full Board of Directors of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine in 2014. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine developed rationale and references for each recommendation. The final statements, explanations and citations were approved by a final vote of the Board of Directors. The list was reviewed and updated by the Guidelines Advisory Panel with final revisions approved by the Executive Committee in 2021.

The AASM disclosure and conflict of interest policy can be found at aasm.org.

Sources

Kushida CA, Littner MR, Morgenthaler T, Alessi CA, Bailey D, Coleman J Jr, Friedman L, Hirshkowitz M, Kapen S, Kramer M, Lee-Chiong T, Loube DL, Owens J, Pancer JP, Wise M. Practice parameters for the indications for polysomnography and related procedures: an update for 2005. Sleep. 2005 Apr;28(4):499-521.

American Academy of Sleep Medicine. International classification of sleep disorders, 3rd ed. Darien, IL: American Academy of Sleep Medicine; 2014.