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Muscle cramps, contractures, or spasms

Also known as Muscle Spasm

In medicine a spasm is a sudden, involuntary contraction of a muscle, a group of muscles, or a hollow organ such as a heart, or a similarly sudden contraction of an orifice. It most commonly refers to a muscle cramp which is often accompanied by a sudden burst of pain, but is usually harmless and ceases after a few minutes. There is a variety of other causes of involuntary muscle contractions, which may be more serious, depending on the cause.

Source: Wikipedia

What causes it?

The most common causes of muscle cramps, contractures, or spasms are muscle spasm, sprain or strain, and high blood pressure. Other possible causes, such as spinal stenosis, are more rare.

What symptoms are related?

Within all the people who go to their doctor with muscle cramps, contractures, or spasms, 43% report having back pain, 37% report having headache, and 32% report having ache all over.


What might my doctor prescribe?

Common Tests and Procedures

Patients with muscle cramps, contractures, or spasms often receive hematologic tests, kidney function tests, lipid panel, other diagnostic procedures (interview; evaluation; consultation), physical therapy exercises, magnetic resonance imaging, injections and aspirations of muscles; tendons; bursa; joints and soft tissue and depression screen .

Common Medications

The most commonly prescribed drugs for patients with muscle cramps, contractures, or spasms include diazepam (valium), carisoprodol (soma), botulinum toxin type a (botox), orphenadrine (flexon), metaxalone (skelaxin), methocarbamol, hydrocortisone, pyridoxine, hydrochlorothiazide / valsartan, epoetin alfa (procrit), nabumetone, tizanidine and rimabotulinumtoxinb (myobloc) .

Who is at risk?

Groups of people at highest risk for muscle cramps, contractures, or spasms include age 45-59 years. On the other hand, age 1-4 years and age < 1 years almost never get muscle cramps, contractures, or spasms.

Age

< 1 years
0.0x
1-4 years
0.0x
5-14 years
0.2x
15-29 years
0.9x
30-44 years
1.2x
45-59 years
1.9x
60-74 years
0.9x
75+ years
0.7x

Sex

Male
0.9x
Female
1.1x

Race/Ethnicity

Black
1.3x
Hispanic
0.7x
White
1.0x
Other
0.4x
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