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Friday, September 17, 2010

Spasticity and Multiple Sclerosis

Stuart Says: If you awake most nights with leg cramps in the backs of your thighs, your calves and or your feet and toes, then I suggest that you read the information found here and then on the subsequent posts that will follow this, on topics such as treatment options...Visit our (this) blog to read-up on Spasticity.


ABOUT SEVERE SPASTICITY
Source: Medtronic

Living with severe spasticity poses difficult physical challenges. Tight, stiff muscles can get in the way of daily activities. Fortunately, there is a therapy from Medtronic that can minimize severe spasticity in some individuals.
 

Definition

Spasticity is often described as tight, stiff muscles or spasms that may make movement, posture, and balance difficult. It may affect your ability to move one or more of your limbs, or to move one side of your body. Sometimes spasticity is so severe that it gets in the way of daily activities, sleep patterns, and caregiving.

Causes

Spasticity is caused by damage or injury to the part of the central nervous system (the brain or spinal cord) that controls voluntary movement. This damage disrupts important signals between the nervous system and muscles, creating an imbalance that increases muscle activity or spasms.

Risk Factors

Severe spasticity is associated with the following conditions:

Symptoms

Symptoms of spasticity may include:1
  • Increased muscle tone
  • Overactive reflexes
  • Involuntary movements, which may include spasms (brisk and/or sustained involuntary muscle contraction) and clonus (series of fast involuntary contractions)
  • Pain
  • Decreased functional abilities and delayed motor development
  • Difficulty with care and hygiene
  • Abnormal posture
  • Contractures (permanent contraction of the muscle and tendon due to severe persistent stiffness and spasms)
  • Bone and joint deformities

Diagnosis

Spasticity is typically diagnosed after the onset of a neurological condition. Your doctor will review your medical history and perform a physical evaluation. Your doctor may consider medications you have taken and whether there is a history of neurological or muscular disorders in your family. To confirm the diagnosis, tests can be performed to evaluate arm and leg movements, muscular activity, passive and active range of motion and ability to perform self-care activities.1

Reference

  1. WebMD Pain Management Health Center. Pain Management: Spasticity. Available at: www.webmd.com. Accessed August 15, 2008.



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Disclaimer:  'MS Views and News' (MSVN), does not endorse any products or services found on this blog. It is up to you to seek advice from your healthcare provider. The intent of this blog is to provide information on various medical conditions, medications, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to keep you informed of current health-related issues. It is not intended to be complete or exhaustive, nor is it a substitute for the advice of your physician. Should you or your family members have any specific medical problem, seek medical care promptly.
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