Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Medical Science (MMSc)

First Advisor

Meir Kryger, MD, FRCPC


Growing evidence supports an association between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and restless legs syndrome (RLS) in children. Prior research suggests that in some patients iron deficiency is an underlying cause of pathological changes in the dopaminergic system of the brain that modulates these disorders. However, the underlying cause of such iron deficiency has not yet been identified. We propose to determine the prevalence of low serum ferritin levels, a marker of reduced iron stores, in children with comorbid ADHD and RLS, and if diet is associated with their diagnosis and observed blood iron levels. A case-control study will examine a sample of 245 children with ADHD and 245 children without ADHD. We will use a diagnostic questionnaire to identify RLS in both groups, and dieticians will analyze 3-day food diaries to identify dietary iron intake. Our findings can inform clinicians of the importance of diet in the ADHD and RLS population.

Open Access

This Article is Open Access