Muscle Twitching (fasciculations)

If it's on your mind and it has to do with multiple sclerosis in any way, post it here.

Muscle Twitching (fasciculations)

Postby viper498 » Tue Apr 25, 2006 6:57 am

Something I noticed is that probably once every two days I'll get a twitching muscle in my calf muscle, thigh, forearm, or upper arm. Is this normal? Or is this indicative of active MS? The only symptom I've had of MS (which led to my diagnosis) was nystagmus in June '05, which has since gone away. I am a 26 y/o male. Does anyone else experience this? It has never really concerned me, but it does seem to happen more than it used too. Is this bad? Should I worry about this? Thanks for any input.

Brock
User avatar
viper498
Family Elder
 
Posts: 428
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 3:00 pm
Location: Missouri, USA

Advertisement

Postby LisaBee » Tue Apr 25, 2006 4:37 pm

Brock,

I have the exact same thing. Sometimes I'll go for days with no twitches at all, then it starts up again and I'll have some kind of repeating, fluttering twitch in a small section of muscle. It isn't seemingly related to any kind of muscle use or fatigue or how I feel generally. Usually it is muscles in my back, back of upper arms, calves, etc. It moves around but is usually in only one place at a time. I was diagnosed in summer 04, and have not had a relapse since. It showed up about six months post-diagnosis and has been off and on since - right now I don't have them. Your diagnosis event was a year later than mine so if there is a time course for this symptom, and if you are like me (although not the 42 y/o female part), it will come and go. Hopefully ultimately just go.

I asked the neurologist about it and he said it didn't really mean anything, and it didn't mean that the MS was getting worse. He seemed totally unconcerned about the symptom. Beyond that, he didn't elaborate, and there is surprisingly little information out there that I could find, other than it showing up in early ALS cases, which is an unpleasant thought. However, I've heard of people without MS that complain about the same thing, and there is such a condition called benign fasciculations.

So I can't help much, other than to commiserate and say you are not alone. You could ask your doctor and maybe get some more information than I did. It would be a good thing to bring up. One thing I've started looking into is electrolyte issues (calcium, potassium, magnesium, etc), since there are a lot of associations between electrolyte imbalances and muscle twitching. I'm trying to pay attention to see if what I eat or drink has any relationship to it cropping up. This sounds really strange, but to get a twitch to stop I lightly rub a hand over the twitch, literally tell it to cease and it usually will ease off, at least for a while or it starts up again somewhere else. It is annoying and sort of worrisome at times, especially when trying to go to sleep. Try a light rub and see if that helps it settle down.

Good luck. Do ask your doctor about it when you get the chance. In the meantime, if my case is at all representative of yours, my doctor was right, and there isn't much to worry about with this symptom.

Lisa
User avatar
LisaBee
Family Elder
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Sat Apr 30, 2005 3:00 pm
Location: Florida

Postby scoobyjude » Tue Apr 25, 2006 4:41 pm

Brock, it does happen to me occasionally but I don't think it is anything to worry about. I haven't even thought to mention it to my neuro. I have had this off and on for about 2 years and I have not gotten any worse as far as symptoms. I'm not even sure that it is the MS that causes it. If it lasts for only a short duration and then goes away, I don't worry too much about it.
User avatar
scoobyjude
Family Elder
 
Posts: 516
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2006 4:00 pm
Location: suburb of Chicago, IL USA

Postby oreo » Tue Apr 25, 2006 5:18 pm

Thanks folks, all this time I've been thinking that I hade something else wrong with me (as if MS, sleep apnea and hypertension isn't enough). With me its facial muscles just below the eye. Last year it was the left one, this year its the right.
Carpe Diem
User avatar
oreo
Family Elder
 
Posts: 166
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2004 3:00 pm
Location: Canada - Ontario - South-West

Postby viper498 » Wed Apr 26, 2006 6:28 am

What I've experienced has been very similar to LisaBee. My spasms/twitching only last a few seconds, and if I flex the muscle it affects, it goes away. I've had them all over though, and they last mere seconds and they go away. I had read the bit about ALS, so yeah, it is was a concern. I drink A LOT of coffee, w/ lots of caffeine, so that could contribute to this, perhaps? Thank you for your replies. It is greatly appreciated.

Brock
User avatar
viper498
Family Elder
 
Posts: 428
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 3:00 pm
Location: Missouri, USA

Postby LisaBee » Wed Apr 26, 2006 5:23 pm

Brock,

I searched around PubMed on the caffeine relationship and couldn't find anything specific to fasciculations per se, but there is a lot of information on how caffeine modulates ion channels in cells and movements of ions like potassium, calcium, etc. I read some information on benign fasciulcation syndromes where it was suggested that people with fasciulations limit their caffeine intake, but i don't know what that is based on. Caffeine also can indirectly affect electrolytes because it is dehydrating. I remember complaining about twitches to the neurologist's PA and she asked if I was drinking enough water.

I too have periodically been a caffeine fiend, but have generally cut back to a couple cups of coffee on weekday mornings and usually no more than two additional caffeine-containing cups of tea a day. Since you raised the issue, I'll pay closer attention to whether my own times of excessive caffeine intake are equated with more twitches.

You might could do a personal experiment - gradually cut back on caffeinated beverages and substitute a noncaffeinated drink like water instead over about two weeks. and then go low/no caffeine for a few more days. Water probably would be best to drink but there are a lot of herbal teas, etc., to chose from if you wanted something hot.. Do a gradual reduction - the times I have dropped caffeinated drinks abruptly after long term binges I've gotten a bad dull headache and felt rotten for a whole day.

It would be worth a try. Who knows...it might help. If it doesn't, there'll be more coffee.

Lisa
User avatar
LisaBee
Family Elder
 
Posts: 177
Joined: Sat Apr 30, 2005 3:00 pm
Location: Florida


Return to General Discussion

 


  • Related topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users


Contact us | Terms of Service

cron