So evidently what I’ve been referring to as muscle spams are actually muscle twitches. After doing a little research last night I realized that what the medical community refers to as muscle spasms are the same thing as cramps. I thought they were two different things.
I do occasionally get muscle spams (aka cramps) but it’s pretty rare since I upped my Magnesium intake. However, the twitching has continued. It’s still primarily on my left side, my entire left side, but mostly in my arm, neck and shoulder.
What I read online describes muscle twitches as:
A muscle twitch or fasciculation is uncontrolled fine movement of a small segment of a larger muscle that can be seen under the skin.
Here’s the problem. What I have is not a small segment of a muscle, but seems to be the entire muscle (at times). Sometimes you can see it under the skin, but most of the time I just feel it. In a way it feels as if my muscle or nerve is a rubber-band stretched as far as it can go, and then someone pulls on it. I get that initial “ding” of the rubber-band going back followed by the reverb down the muscle or nerve. Sometimes it makes my arm or leg jerk or shake.
Whatever the case it’s tiring. In the last few weeks it’s been so bad that I could barely hold a book in my hand and read it without it just becoming downright painful. Having any weight in my left hand seems to increase the “twitches”, even a weight as small as my Ipod.
Muscle relaxers help to calm things down at night, but I can’t take them during the day or they knock me out. Not that that would really be a problem lately since for the last few weeks I’ve barely done anything during the day except watch tv or listen to music, because various symptoms have been that bad.
These twitches or spasms, or whatever they are, have been bad enough lately to make me feel like there has to be something else here. It’s getting worse. Is this really Fibro? Yet, every other test has come back clean. It’s frustrating and I feel like I’m wasting away, mind and body. It’s funny, the pain I could deal with and work through, it’s all the other little things that put me to a stop. It’s the fatigue, the twitching, the feeling almost paralyzed when I wake up in the morning.
I guess thinking about it, it all makes some sense. Fibro is a nerve disorder. My nerves are sending random signals out to my left side (for some reason) and those random signals cause twitches. Instead of just one random twitch like a normal person might have, my nerves are firing over and over again causing twitches at such a frequent rate and so scattered that you can’t really see it or feel it in just one place. Instead, it becomes like my entire side is twitching.
At least now I have the terminology correct and that will help me when I talk to my Dr again. When I told him I was having spasms he kept telling me to stretch. I couldn’t figure out why all the stretching I was doing and my “spasms” kept getting worse. Maybe he’ll have some new advice when I tell him it’s twitching.
- Talking With Your Doctor About Pain
- The Chronic Pain Scale: Communicating Your Chronic Pain
- Fibromyalgia Nerve Pain – there might be more to it than you think.
- 3 Things that Affect Our Communication with Doctors