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Suggest treatment for leg cramps at night

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Answered by

Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1998
Answered : 4917 Questions
There is another small problem I have with my lower left leg which aches when I have been lying on it in bed for some hours, i.e. by the morning. I have tried wearing a support sock at night on that leg and I find this helps but sometimes it is not enough and it is only by moving the leg around or walking on it that I can get relief from the pain. This has been going on for many months and sometimes wakes me up at night. What is the cause of it and what can I do about it? I imagine it is a circulation problem. I am not taking any medication other than Movicol. I have been taking a low dose of HRT for the past 33 years but stopped taking it last September. I imagine this has nothing to do with it. Thank you for your reply.
Posted Wed, 12 Feb 2014 in Medicines and Side Effects
Answered by Dr. Vaibhav Gandhi 50 minutes later
Brief Answer: Some details of your symptoms. Detailed Answer: Hello, I have studied your case. I would like to ask some details of your symptoms so that I can help you better. Arch increases in foot or leg? Do you have stiffness of small joints in morning? Do you have history of arthritis? There is possibility of venous thrombosis , colour Doppler of leg will help in confirming diagnosis. Waiting for your reply? Wishing you good health. Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Suggest treatment for leg cramps at night 5 hours later
Thank you for your message. I have answered your questions in my reply but I'm not sure you have received it so will try again. The ache is in my left leg and not my foot. I do not have stiffness of small joints in the morning but my back is a bit stiff. I do not have a history of arthritis but I believe I have osteo-arthritis in my spine. I do get cramp in my legs sometimes at night. I have had pain in my legs in the past but overcame this by keeping the legs warmer in bed with more close-fitting pyjamas. Recently I have found it helpful to wear footless long socks as well as pyjamas but the left leg is not now responding as well as it did. Before I had my operation last summer I had over the years a lot of pain in my buttock on the left side and discomfort down the leg to the foot but since the operation this has been alright. I think it was caused by a trapped nerve.
Answered by Dr. Vaibhav Gandhi 12 hours later
Brief Answer: Explained below Detailed Answer: Hello, I have studied your case. Night muscle cramps can be reduced by Massaging the cramped muscle with your hands or oil. Drinking plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration. Stretching your leg muscles or riding a stationary cycle. Taking diet rich in calcium and potassium or oral supplements of the same Check your vit B12 and Vit D 3 levels. Hot and cold fomentation to leg. You can consult physiotherapist for help. Physiotherapy like ultrasound and interferential therapy will give quick relief. Add tab methylcobalamine 1500 mcg once day. Another possibility of nerve entrapment, You may need to do MRI spine again to see for nerve compression For these symptoms analgesic and neurotropic medication can be started. Till time, avoid lifting weights, Sit with support to back. You can consult physiotherapist for help. I will advise to check your vit B12 and vit D3 level. If you’re new MRI shows disc bulge with nerve compression then surgery may help Hope this answers your query. If you have additional questions or follow up queries then please do not hesitate in writing to us. I will be happy to answer your queries. Wishing you good health. Take care.
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