Q. I get muscle twitches in my quad and calf muscles often with no pain. Could this be due to anxiety?

Answered by
Dr. Hitesh Kumar
and medically reviewed by Dr. Vinodhini. J
This is a premium question & answer published on May 22, 2020 and last reviewed on: Jun 03, 2020

Hello doctor,

I am a 41-year-old male who is 5'10" and in pretty good shape. However, last week while I was sitting on the couch at night I noticed muscle twitches in my quad muscles. I ignored it thinking maybe I walked or exercised more than normal. But since then they have not gone away and I notice them in all different parts of my body but mostly the legs (calves, shins, quads) of both legs. I feel them every few minutes or so while sitting or laying down. They are not painful. I have not lost any strength while doing pull-ups, lunges, or dumbell curls. I do not drink coffee nor alcohol and I do not take any medicines. I took a magnesium supplement for the last few days and it did not help my symptoms. I started googling stuff and became very afraid. Could this be caused by anxiety? I did have some restless nights last week. Please help.



Welcome to icliniq.com.

Such muscle twitching can happen in few medical conditions like anxiety, motor neuron disease, nerve injury, benign fasciculation syndrome, and hyperthyroidism.

If you do not have any weakness or muscle thinning, it may be due to anxiety. I suggest to observe it.

Get T3, T4, and TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) test. If you are anxious, you need to overcome that too. If it persists, then it may need some further investigations.

Thank you doctor,

Do you think I might have ALS? Is this a common symptom? I am very afraid now.



Welcome back to icliniq.com.

It is difficult to say if you have ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) or not. ALS has other more clinical symptoms and signs too, which occur to happen gradually. All are not present in the initial time.

The symptoms are muscle thinning, weakness in muscle strength, difficulty in swallowing, and change in voice. It is more of a clinical diagnosis, after ruling out other causes by investigations. I suggest to observe for your symptoms.

Get your T3, T4, and TSH done. If you are feeling much anxiety, you can meet a psychiatrist.

If your symptoms persist, then you can undergo:

1. MRI brain and MRI screening of the whole spine.

2. NCV (nerve conduction velocity test) and EMG (electromyography) of all four limbs.

ALS is a rare disease. Commonly such symptoms happen in anxiety and benign fasciculation syndrome.

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