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Is it normal to have cramps in calf 3 weeks after fracture and cast fitted to knee ?

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Practicing since : 2001
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I broke my leg 3 weeks ago and have a cast to my knee. The last few days I have been getting cramp in my calf during th day. I am allowed to walk on the lag - it is the fibula (I think that is the right spelling) that is broken. I'm taking 75mg aspirin a day as advised by the doctor as I am due to go on a long haul flight not long after the cast is due to come off - is the cramp somthing to worry about? (My step mother had 2 blood clots last year which were serrious and I am worried the cramps could be a symptom)
Posted Sat, 21 Apr 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Naveen Kumar 1 hour later

Thanks for the query

The muscle cramps you are experiencing is due to the increased blood supply into the tissues of the leg which was relatively immobile for a long time. Whenever any skeletal muscle of the body is not used for a certain amount of time, there will be reduced blood supply to that particular muscle, because the energy required for that region is minimal.

Once the mobility of the muscle increases in the relatively immobile organ, there is sudden gush of blood into the shrunken blood vessels of that region. The mobile muscle now demands extra nutrition, which is not fulfilled by the low blood perfusion through the collapsed blood vessels. Hence the essential minerals falls short of the normal requirements causing derangement in the biochemical composition of the skeletal muscle cells leading to improper relaxations of the muscles causing cramps.

This is a normal phenomenon following the fracture of the limbs; it will improve gradually once the muscles start relaxing. Do not force yourself over the affected part, take adequate rest before each movements, it will be alright.

Finally, there is no relation between the blood clots your stepmother had and your present situation. It is very unlikely to happen with a fibula fracture and more so in a young and healthy individual.

Hope I have answered your query: I will be available for the further queries.

Dr. Naveen Kumar N.
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