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Horrendous Leg Spasms at Night

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Old 04-13-2018, 03:04 PM   #1
Rechellef
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Default Horrendous Leg Spasms at Night

In addition to MG, I have neuropathy in both legs (yay me). I still stay active as I coach gymnastics. I am not on steroids, but am on Pyridostigmine. However, I have noticed lately that my left leg will go through endless spasms that keep me awake and at times are very painful. I am newly diagnosed and am wondering if this is part of MG? Is it possibly because my muscles are fatigued by the end of the day? I do take calcium, magnesium (chelated), and potassium supplements and keep myself well hydrated.
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AnnieB3 (04-13-2018)
Old 04-13-2018, 07:24 PM   #2
AnnieB3
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Hmm. Where did they do the EMG? Only on your legs?

Do you have any numbness or tingling in your face or hands? Has anyone checked you for a vitamin B12 deficiency? Or vitamin D? Has a doctor checked your thyroid function? A primary doctor can do those and other basic testing like a metabolic panel.

Is the leg cramp on the opposite side you sleep on or the same? Or do you sleep on your back? Some people can have leg cramps from weakness (not enough drugs while sleeping). But you might have undiagnosed sleep apnea (which weight or being in shape has nothing to do with).

I have had calf cramps. They are horribly painful. Mine are from overuse or when my MG is overall bad. But there are many causes to leg cramps.

How much magnesium do you take? Too much magnesium or potassium is not good for MG.

Since you have been an athlete, I'm sure you can understand this. Overuse of muscles can bring fatigue, cramps, spasms. When someone with MG does too much, those symptoms just happen a lot sooner than they would for an athlete running a marathon, for example. And that "fatigue" of muscles can also affect metabolism. When my MG is worse, I can have what I call "MG cold." My metabolism gets so run down that my body gets colder. Takes a very warm blanket or coat to warm up!

Pay attention to how you sit, what muscles you tense up, etc. Normal people aren't aware of how certain activities affect what muscle groups. Once someone has MG, the cause and effect relationship of activity to weakness becomes far more clear!

Don't assume the leg cramps are from MG though. You should probably see an internist to make sure there isn't something more serious (blood clot). Do you travel or sit for long periods of time? When was the last time you had an ECG?

I hope that helps! But, really, only a doctor can!

Annie
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Old 04-13-2018, 09:16 PM   #3
Rechellef
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnnieB3 View Post
Hmm. Where did they do the EMG? Only on your legs?

Do you have any numbness or tingling in your face or hands? Has anyone checked you for a vitamin B12 deficiency? Or vitamin D? Has a doctor checked your thyroid function? A primary doctor can do those and other basic testing like a metabolic panel.

Is the leg cramp on the opposite side you sleep on or the same? Or do you sleep on your back? Some people can have leg cramps from weakness (not enough drugs while sleeping). But you might have undiagnosed sleep apnea (which weight or being in shape has nothing to do with).

I have had calf cramps. They are horribly painful. Mine are from overuse or when my MG is overall bad. But there are many causes to leg cramps.

How much magnesium do you take? Too much magnesium or potassium is not good for MG.

Since you have been an athlete, I'm sure you can understand this. Overuse of muscles can bring fatigue, cramps, spasms. When someone with MG does too much, those symptoms just happen a lot sooner than they would for an athlete running a marathon, for example. And that "fatigue" of muscles can also affect metabolism. When my MG is worse, I can have what I call "MG cold." My metabolism gets so run down that my body gets colder. Takes a very warm blanket or coat to warm up!

Pay attention to how you sit, what muscles you tense up, etc. Normal people aren't aware of how certain activities affect what muscle groups. Once someone has MG, the cause and effect relationship of activity to weakness becomes far more clear!

Don't assume the leg cramps are from MG though. You should probably see an internist to make sure there isn't something more serious (blood clot). Do you travel or sit for long periods of time? When was the last time you had an ECG?

I hope that helps! But, really, only a doctor can!

Annie
Yes, all of those tests were run (B12, Vitamin D, Copper, thyroid, etc.) very recently in fact and were all normal except my B6 and since I have neuropathy in both legs, I had to stop taking a particular supplement.

No, I do not sit for long periods of time (I have a hard time letting myself sit sill in fact) and my last ECG was about 3 years ago for a benign condition called PVC's (which have since gone away).

I do notice that the spasms and cramps are much worse when I've had coach a few more gymnastics classes than usual (such as yesterday), so perhaps it is from muscle fatigue. There have been some classes where I wasn't sure I could finish coaching due to weakness and fatigue before I even knew what MG was and it was on those nights that my legs would spasm and cramp worse than other.
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Old 04-13-2018, 09:21 PM   #4
ErinBear
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Dear Rechellef,

I'm sorry to hear about your leg cramps. I get them also, possibly for various reasons. I suspect part of it is because of muscle tiredness related to my myasthenia gravis. In my case, I think I also get dehydrated, and that can make muscle cramps worse. It is harder for me to drink because I tend to choke on liquids, so I have to be more deliberate about it. When I get better hydration, I have less cramps. I don't take all of the supplements that you do, but I do take a few sips of a sports drink (Gatorade) in the evening to reduce the chance of leg cramping at night. This seems to help me. I try to include some foods with potassium in my diet during the week, like avocados, bananas, carrots, and potatoes to name some options. I also try to stretch right before going to bed. I don't do anything particularly special, just a few generalized leg stretches much as you might do before running or other sports.

AnnieB3 is right, though. The best thing is to ask a doctor for advice. They can check and make sure your health is okay otherwise. If the cramping is related to the MG, maybe they will have some recommendations. Best wishes to you!

Take care,
Erin
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