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True Muscle Cramps - caused by nerves.

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Unread 05-23-2009, 01:16 PM   #1
dllfo
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Default True Muscle Cramps - caused by nerves.

I have fought severe muscle cramps for many years. Last night I was woke up at 1:30am with both calf muscles cramping. While hooked to my Ventilator (I will quit breathing at night and not start again - CCHS - so I have to sleep on a Ventilator with oxygen), I jumped up and the left calf muscle "turned loose", but the right side became a knot. I have to jump up in the air and come down on the ball of my foot to get the muscle to release. Repeatedly. Today, my right calf muscle feels like someone beat it with a ball bat. A few days ago it was the left calf muscle. Always calf muscles at night. Prednisone started my cramping, before it I had almost no cramping my whole life.

That is my background and why I am posting. I have been on Quinine for many years. I am down to only 324mg a night. I am not on Prednisone, except when I can't breathe. The current Quinine is called Qualaquin. When cramping like this I have to go up as high as 972mg a night. I know it is not good, but ripping a muscle off the bone won't be good either, and the Prednisone is hard on me, but the side effects of not breathing are severe as well.

My apologies for making this such a long post. I have been reading up on cramps, trying to see what I can do besides take Quinine. I eat at least one banana a day, take CitraCal tablets a day, I take two Slow-Mag tablets a day and whatever else mrsD recommended. I counted my daily "pill" intake. Vitamins, minerals, prescriptions = 31 a day. Over half are Vitamins, etc. I am trying to get away from the Quinine if I can.

What I did not know is there are 4 types of cramps. Mine are "True" cramps, as defined in the quote below. I also did not know nerves cause it.

"True" cramps ---- "True" cramps involve part or all of a single muscle or a group of muscles that generally act together, such as the muscles that flex several adjacent fingers. Most authorities agree that "true" cramps are caused by hyperexcitability of the nerves that stimulate the muscles. They are overwhelmingly the most common type of skeletal muscle cramps. The link to that article is:
http://www.medicinenet.com/muscle_cr...2.htm#2whatare

Any other suggestions or solutions to stop major muscle cramps? With PN, Trigeminal Neuralgia, RLS, etc. --- I wonder if Quinine is the wrong treatment?
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Last edited by dllfo; 05-23-2009 at 01:19 PM. Reason: spelling, grammar
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Unread 05-24-2009, 10:41 AM   #2
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An interesting "side effect" of the severe cramp I had in my right calf muscle a couple of nights ago .... I apparently broke a lot of capillaries, as my calf muscle has instant varicose veins. I noticed it last night. Even my foot, on the inside, has so many capillaries broken that it looks red, instead of the normal flesh color. I hope everything returns to normal in the next week or so.

BTW, I increased my dosage of Quinine to 972mg and I have not had a cramp. I also started eating several bananas a day, hopefully this will stop it and I can go back to 324mg of Quinine at bedtime.
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Unread 05-25-2009, 09:52 PM   #3
mikhail.tomasovic
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i'm sorry that you are having such bad cramps my friend! i pray that they will get better.

i wanted to ask a couple questions before i start throwing my $0.02 in... isn't quinine the medication they give to people with malaria? i thought i read that somewhere. perhaps there is a much better medication for you than that.

you said that it is because of nerves, right? i know when i become very anxious i have very bad muscle cramps as well because my muscles tighten up so much, i know that cannot compare to the pain you must be feeling but i am trying my best to find a point of reference. i am on suboxone, which is an opiate blocker primarily used to treat addiction for those of us with low dopamine levels... but i have not had cramps since i have been on that medication... perhaps a better anti-inflammatory/pain killer would work wonders for you! also, i think the potassium in the bananas (among other nutrients) is really helping the soreness... i always eat bananas to keep from being very sore after a hard workout.

i hope you feel better, and God Bless you!

Mik
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Unread 05-26-2009, 10:41 AM   #4
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Mik, Thank you for the kind thoughts.

Quinine IS for malaria and I took plenty of it during Vietnam. I am taking it again for muscle cramps. And I eat bananas daily, so that should help some.

My problem is not just "nerves" but severe injuries from a multi-car pile up on the California
freeway system. We were "rear ended" by two Ford pick ups, then 2nd truck ADMITTED to going over 80mph when he hit us on my side. My lower back is inoperable for extensive damage to discs, nerves, etc. It gets pretty complicated to describe, but I wanted to point out that I have physical damage to my body. It is much more than just being nervous or being anxious. I was on 7 different meds for Anxiety...all in about 15 months. I had suicidal ideations with most of them. I finally just quit all of that junk one day and felt much better within a few days.

I just detoxed off morphine and oxycodone (and demerol and fentanyl and other opiates).
I have taken Celebrex and naprasyn for anti-inflam. med. Celebrex works well, but has its own side effects. I never used it for muscle cramps because I cannot anticipate which nights I will have the bad cramps.

I, at last count, have 13 diseases/medical problems ranging from Cardiac, Respiratory, Urological, Central Nervous System, Peripheral Nervous System, Lower Back, carpal tunnel, Cognitive Dysfunction and others I can't remember. So my problems can be multi-faceted.
Thanks again for your kind thoughts and prayers.
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Unread 06-04-2009, 11:55 PM   #5
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I also have cramps however, it's unusual that one would get a cramp like a charlie horse under my chin like someone is poking their finger there as hard as they can. GOD>>>it's painful!
My husband thinks IM a nutt LOL...It really hurts. I took some potassium and it helped somewhat...I know that some seizure meds can play with the electralyte balance...
I found some good ways to prevent them...again thanx for your help here, I thought I was the only one who was crazy as the dr. cals it. WTH??
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Unread 06-05-2009, 11:42 AM   #6
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Cramps under your chin? Yes, after my first long term bout with Prednisone I had cramps in my neck, under my chin, and it seems like nearly every where on my body. I can't remember my tongue cramping, but .... let me think, it is a smooth muscle I think, not striated.

Our bodies are amazing.... until they start malfunctioning, then it seems like we can just hang on. If I wrote down each malfunction I have in a week I would be nominated for the "Whiner and sniveler Hall of Fame."

Until Prednisone I seriously don't remember having cramps. I know I must have had one at one time or another, but very few. Like headaches... I get one a year at the most. I am really blessed there.

Just remember, it could always be worse.
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Unread 07-03-2009, 07:19 PM   #7
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Hi-
You'e added all I can think of for muscle cramps. I am ama3d that you can stand and jump on the affected limb. When they hit me that badly I eake up screaming and crawl across the floor - screaming to wake someone up to get me a Skelaxin muscle relaxant - it helps to at least quiet me down.

I know you are trying to get off meds but maybe having a good dose muscle relaxant on hand is an alternative. Another possibility might be to rub Arnica ointment, a homeopathic remedy, into your calves, prior to going to bed each night.

My leg hurts now in sympathy-
Noreen
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Unread 07-03-2009, 08:39 PM   #8
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I have suffered with leg cramps myself for many years. Mine are caused by the large doses of Lasix I take for a neuro condition called pseudo tumor cerebri( also called intercranial hypertension) I take 120mg of lasix a day. My Dr's decided to test my calcium, potassium and magnesium levels after I started getting eye twitches along with the leg cramps. All my levels were in the basement. I now take otc calcium, 1200mg 3 times a day, 250 mg of Magnesium twice a day and a prescription strength potassium ( 20 mediquil) three times a day. This has helped tremendously. I had tried eating bananas and taking otc potassium, but it wasn't enough. Maybe this is something that you can try. It was great for me.

Stephanie
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Unread 07-09-2009, 08:14 PM   #9
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Thank you for the suggestions. I am sorry to hear of your problems. I went back on 972mg of Quinine a day and it stopped the leg cramps. I now take 972 one day, then 648mg the next day. My goal is to get back down where I was (324mg a day, maybe skipping every third or fourth day).

I am so glad mine have let up. Hope you are doing ok with yours.
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Unread 07-09-2009, 09:27 PM   #10
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I know this may sound too simplistic but I have been having some serious cramping going on in various places.

Part of my issue was low iron and therefore low oxygen getting to the muscles. I had iron deficiency anemia. I correct that with supplements.

The other thing which is not confirmed but I follow a regime for it is secondary adrenal insufficiency and fatigue. My sodium and potassium levels often get out of whack and then muscle spasms. So in the mornings and in the afternoon I have a glass of water with 1/8 sea salt in it because my body does not hang onto fluids well because of the adrenal fatigue. But please do not add any salt if you doc says you have high blood pressure. My pressure usually runs low so the sea salt and water help me hang onto fluids and electrolyte balance.

Just a thought
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