I have cramps in my calf and thigh for about three months and now twitching in the leg. I am anxious about ALS. Is the twitching in ALS constant, or does it disappear when moving? I am currently taking Levothyroxine.
Welcome to icliniq.com.
Sorry to hear regarding the problem that you are facing. Please clarify your age. Does the cramps in the thigh and calf is one-sided or on both sides? Twitching in ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) starts inconstantly and typically appears when we try to tap the muscle. There are many more symptoms, and the frequency of cramps increases, and twitching also happens in the shoulder region. There is a lot we should discuss about ALS. There are entity names benign fasciculations which happens to everyone. We need to talk more. So either you book a phone consult, or we continue discussing it by this means.
Thank you for your reply.
You are the first person who has responded in detail; I appreciate it. I am 53 years old. The cramp started three months back. I would get one in my calf while sitting and watching the TV. And sometimes, when sitting with my leg up or exercising, I will get it in my thigh. The twitching began about five weeks ago. I went to the GP a couple of weeks ago, and he looked at my leg and tested the strength. There is no weakness. I have another appointment tomorrow as it is causing a lot of anxiety. I have been exhausted after reading on the internet that these can be an initial symptom of ALS. I also read that the twitching can be constant and does not disappear when you move a muscle. Mine disappears when I walk. The GP did flick my calf, but I did not know why he did that until you mentioned it. My cramps have not increased in frequency, but then the thigh cramps up if I lift my leg out to the back.
Welcome back to icliniq.com.
Thanks for appreciating. I completely understand the worry and anxiety around these symptoms. Two months is a relatively short period. Please answer these few questions.
On examination in ALS, the legs, thighs, and arms tend to thin out in muscle bulk in due time, let us say around one year or so, but the power remains near normal even till the end.
Vitamin D deficiency is a prevalent cause of twitching and cramps, so please take OTC (over the counter) vitamin D.
If you have to be 100 percent sure, then you need to get an EMG (electromyography) NCV (nerve conduction velocity) done.
The history you have given does not fall for ALS because firstly, ALS is slow to progress; twitching comes and goes in various parts of the body, such as calves, back of the shoulder, tongue (when the tongue is inside the mouth and not protruding out).
Thank you for your reply.
The cramp came first spontaneously in the right calf, and then thigh only during exercise. The twitching came later, mostly in the calf, then in the thigh a little but only at rest, not when I am moving around, and no twitching in the shoulder. There is no problem with swallowing and no twitching in the tongue. My muscles seem to be fine, but it is as though I am waiting for the weakness to come. If it is due to vitamin D deficiency, could it just be in one leg? Would the muscle bulk usually show before the cramp and twitching starts? I have an underactive thyroid, which is why I went to the GP initially. After the cramping, I thought it might be my thyroid, but the GP said it would not be only in one leg.
Welcome back to icliniq.com.
I read your reply. Everything seems to be fine. Vitamin D deficiency or benign fasciculations or twitching usually happens in one place. It subsides for one to two months because of our intervention, like giving vitamin D supplements or decreasing anxiety, or decreasing caffeine. Then these benign twitchings will happen at some other area but with a gap of a few months. Muscle bulk reduces relatively early; for example, there a muscle called first dorsal interossei (FDI) that atrophies (check on the internet where is FDI and then close). Thyroid problems will give generalized twitchings. That does not seem to be the cause. So right now, the best way is to wait for two weeks and take vitamin D supplements, reduce the caffeine intake (you can take decaf beverages), and get into some yoga program to reduce the anxiety level. Then after two weeks, we can decide from there. Does it sound fine for you?
Thank you, doctor, for your reply.
Do benign fasciculations cause localized muscle cramps and twitching? I am seeing my GP today for my anxiety caused by this. Is there anything I should ask?
Welcome back to icliniq.com
Twitching is another name for fasciculations. Cramps are not a part of benign fasciculation syndrome; it can again be a sign of vitamin D deficiency. Please ask your GP to reassess you for tap-induced fasciculations around the shoulder region and the other calf. Another thing to stay ahead of this is checking your plantar response and tone of legs (this is a part of general neurological examinations); tone tends to increase, and plantar response will be extensor if there is a problem. Lastly, she or he can check for tongue fasciculations.
Was this answer helpful?|
Query: Hello doctor, I am concerned about the symptoms caused by ALS. I have muscle twitching in my right leg and foot, calf, thigh, knee, and foot. Along with tingling and popping sensation in feet, I have weakness type feeling in my right leg and foot (which appears to be thinner than my left leg). Plea... Read Full »
Query: Hi doctor,I did a test. I got my results that my erection transmitter is 2.99, testosterone is 4.459. vitamins E, K, and C are also slightly low. Could this be the reason I have premature ejaculation? At times, I also have a weak erection after one ejaculation. What should I take to treat these? Tha... Read Full »
Query: Hi doctor, I met with a car accident three weeks ago. I was injured and had trauma to the chest wall muscles. My chest muscles went into spasm periodically, but has subsided somewhat. My right side lower chest is the only area still hurting. After rest for a long period or sleep, when I activate th... Read Full »
Ask your health query to a doctor online?Ask a Neurologist Now