Leg cramps range from mildly annoying to intensely painful and debilitating. No matter how severe your leg cramping is, treating it is a matter of discovering the root cause. In this blog we are going to discuss the various factors that may be causing your leg cramps, and how to treat acute and chronic leg cramping.
What is Causing my Leg Cramps?
Leg cramps are the result of muscle spasms that cause the muscles in the legs to involuntary seize up without the patient’s control. If leg cramps occur specifically in the calf, they are called Charly Horses. There are many potential elements that can cause a person’s legs to cramp up, including:
- Not stretching enough before exercise
- Poor circulation in the legs
- Overexertion or muscle fatigue during exercise
- Pinched nerves in the spinal cord or legs
Certain medications (such as Lasix and Evista) have also been shown to cause muscle spasms in the legs.
Treating Leg Cramps
Treating leg cramps depends on the root cause of the cramping. If the cramping is acute and pops up in the course of exercising, it can typically be treated with massaging, stretching, and icing the muscle. However, if the cramping is chronic and extremely painful (or comes with numbness in the legs), the root cause may be related to the nerves. If that’s the case, you may need to consider over options like nerve block injections or minimally invasive surgery on the affected nerves.
If you are experiencing leg cramps that are causing you pain or interfering with your mobility, contact an experienced pain management physician. The pain doctors at Advanced Spine & Pain Clinics of MN have over 20 years of experience treating leg pain conditions and can walk you through your treatment options. Contact us today to set up your appointment.