This question was answered on Fri 29, Aug 2008 05:29am by Dr Bhupinder K, MD

Severe and acute leg cramps while sleeping

Asked by Unregistered (Male; 54; USA; Diabetic; Relevant drugs:Neuronton, glyburide, metephormin, atenolol, lisinopril, simvastatin, etodolac, allopurinol, ) on Tue 19, Aug 2008 12:32pm

My husband is 54 years old. He is 6'4" and 240. He is diabetic, he has high blood pressure. He works on his feet all day. Sometimes at night he has acute leg cramps that start in his feet and can go to the knee area or even to his groin. The pain is excrutiating and wakes him and he has to jump to his feet and walk arround for 10 to 15 minutes to get relief. He might go two weeks with no episodes and then have 5 or 6 episodes in one night. We have tried altering his diet and increasing fluids to be more proactive. But sometimes it just doesn't matter what we do.

Actions: | Forward |



Security code
Enter the text as shown above

E-Mail me when someone replies to this post
Answer by Dr Bhupinder K, MD  on Fri 29, Aug 2008 05:29am:

Hello, Some of the important causes of leg cramps are overextension of the muscles,overweight,prolonged standing during the day,dehydration, alterations in the balance of salts in the bloodstream (such as a high or low sodium or potassium level),neuropathy(esp in diabetes),hypothyroidism,peripheral vascular disease(narrowing of the leg arteries which causes poor circulation),sarcoidosis,excess alcohol,nerve compression, and sometimes liver disease. Some of these causes like dehydration,being overweight,alcohol intake and prolonged standing are modifiable by efforts of the patient. Stretching and massaging the affected muscle (usually a calf muscle) can usually relieve an attack of cramp. A painkiller such as paracetamol may help to ease muscle discomfort and tenderness that sometimes persists for up to 24 hours after a cramp has gone. My advise is to consult a physician and rule out the above medical conditions by thorough investigations as without physical examination and investigations, pinpointing a diagnosis is tough. Hope it helps. Take care and pls do keep us posted if you want any more information.
Our doctors provide free answers to your questions. If you are happy with our services, please consider making a donation.
Click the button below to donate.

Please rate my answer (select the stars, no need to log in.)  


Comment by john on Sat 23, Oct 2010 07:35am:
I have had numerous and frequent abdominal, thigh, leg and foot cramps since 1982. My doctor could not seem to identify the cause but as a trial he wrote a prescription for nitroglycerin 0.4mg tablets. When the cramping starts, I take one tablet place it under the tongue and in about 8-15 minutes the cramping stops. He explained it this way. Nitroglycerin is mainly used to treat angina. Defined as follows. Angina (angina pectoris - Latin for squeezing of the chest) is chest discomfort that occurs when there is a decreased blood oxygen supply to an area of the heart muscle. In most cases, the lack of blood supply is due to a narrowing of the coronary arteries as a result of arteriosclerosis. Other muscles can cramp because of diminished blood flow as well. What Nitroglycerin does - is cause the blood vessels to dilate which allows more blood to flow to the muscle tissue, hence more oxygen to the muscle. The result is - ending the cramping episode. It is now 2010 and I keep a bottle of Nitroglycerin at my bed side to this day. It does work! Ask your doctor if this may work for you as well.

Comment by Robert on Fri 24, Dec 2010 07:17am:
I am 64, physically active and suffer severe cramps in my legs, feet and groin (of late). It seems to be getting worse. However, I find I often do not have enough fluid intake in winter. But the main cure (within minutes) is a salt shaker. If a cramp occurs I place a few shakes of salt in my palm and chuck it my mouth. I do not swallow it but let it absorb through my tongue and throat. It is a very low dose so will not cause hypertension problems. I do have slightly high BP and it has had no adverse effect. The cramps will be gone in minutes and I rest happily the remainder of the night.

Comment by on Fri 24, Dec 2010 07:23am:
thanks Robert for sharing your experiences

Comment by on Mon 14, Mar 2011 05:29am:
Nighttime leg cramps have no real cause and are simply a painful nuisance. There are times when these cramps may be associated with other conditions or disorders that may need treatment.

Comment by Charlotte on Sun 08, Jul 2012 10:38am:
i have cramps in my ankle and down my foot. Also have a severe pain in my groin when putting pressure on the inside of my heal or foot

Comment by Ruth on Fri 15, Feb 2013 11:24pm:
I have been helped by drinking tonic water (quinine)', either regular or sugar free. You can get it in little cans or bottles and keep it by your bed.

This question is open for comments.  Please share your opinion.




Security code
Enter the text as shown above

E-Mail me when someone replies to this post

What users are searching right now on Ask Medical Doctor:
Search for answers     diltiazem     Whatcancauseredblotchessuddenlyap     Search for answers     whitehead     a picture of the human body     Howtogetrideofaperiod     tabletlopez     IselfdiagnosedthatI     Asthma attack     heart failure     Hodgkin     bloodystoolsonlyoncethenbacktonormal     blackbloodfromthebackendwhatswrong     Search for answers     canmeshherniarepaircauserashoverhipsandwaist     pvcs     I have severe leg cramps and knee pain mainly on left side     lunula     bleeding after menopause     Search for answers     CanutakeVicodinandflexeriltogether     Search for answers     liqouria     ifbloodgroupsareoppositesinspouses     MyDadhasjustbendiagnosedwithAlzheimersisitFatal     ifihavepelvicprolapsesurgerywillihaveatightervagina     sibelium     ambien     prostate massage     numbarms     my9yearoldsonhasaswollentesticle     _     pet allergy     function     men how bleed somtimes when they poop     cancel     AMBIEN EFFECTS ON THE LIVER     Lip     bedbugbites     Can I drink alcohol while taking bedoyecta tri     clavamid     Bruiseburns     Bholagoli     excessseminalfluid     cystbetweenvaginaandanus     IMMUNE     hiatalhernea     sirmysperm     Yest     tabletlopez     patellafractureandquads     howlongcanhemorrhoidslast     kyahastmathunkarnasahih     pills     uricacidsymptoms     BRUSHBURN     Genitalitching92654Enteryourcommentsherequick     melescum     Otherthanpregnancywhatcancauseyour     heartproblem     skindischargingheatnorashoritching     Iama50yearoldmaleinaveragephysica     Itchy     opiumpopydrug     IhavebeentoldIhavelowlyingcerebel     nuva     lukeriavaginaldischarge     Sharppaininrightarmpit     sideeffectsofamoxicillian     pittiuchalna     indication     lpr     Genitalitching92654Enteryourcommentsherenavel     peripheralneuropthywhatisit     HelloIamveryworrieda92652Enteryourcommentsherelong     lumpsinthetestes     urineandprecum     Whatiscreatinine     WHAT20IS20L20SEA     ihavetiny     stitchescannotbend     how20to20increase20sex20capacity     labrintitis     kneepainwhilesleeping     stoppedusingthepatch     HOWMANYDAYSHAVINGSEXAFTEROPRATION     neeneedoo     i want to know esic doctors list or dispenceries address dombivli west     lumponstomcharea     bleedingaftersex     NeverEjaculatedDischarg92658Enteryourcommentsheremoderator     Charliehorseinmyintestines     not     Search20for20answers     howlongcanyougowithouthaving     urethritis     transvginalultrasound     why swelling moves from injury site to another location     scratchythroat     Metabolic diseases     palecoloredstool     WHATISASLIPEDDISK     lokoriacreateanyproblemsinpregnancy     Tinglingextremities     gonorrhea     operacja     SHOULDACRACKLINGCOUGHBEALARMING     Aco     HEENT     shortness     where     viginia     irritablebowel     chills     whereisthepanceas     Hasthmethun     prolongedperiods     symptom     renalcalculi     severeachestiredheadinacloud     yearstested     Genitalitching92654Enteryourcommentsheremoderator     mucousinstool     lefttheighfeelslikeitisviberating     testiclehangslower     holeunderarm     megamagnum     hemangioma     WantinfoonimmunotherapyfromDrAnthonyK     numbnessmuscletwichesandswellinginupperhandsfeetandchest     stain     PregnancyTest     strongsmellofammoniain5yearoldssocks     Hellotheremy     

©2011 - Ask Medical Doctor  |  All Rights Reserved
The site is not a replacement for professional medical opinion, examination, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your medical doctor or other qualified health professional before starting any new treatment or making any changes to existing treatment. Do not delay seeking or disregard medical advice based on information written by any author on this site. No health questions and information on AskMedicalDoctor is regulated or evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and therefore the information should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease without the supervision of a medical doctor. Posts made to these forums express the views and opinions of the author, and not the administrators, moderators, or editorial staff and hence AskMedicalDoctor and its principals will accept no liabilities or responsibilities for the statements made.

Home | Terms & Conditions | Contact Us | Frequently Asked Questions | Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Advertise with us