Why Is My Arm Twitching!? An Inquiry.

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Biology 103
2005 Second Paper
On Serendip

Why Is My Arm Twitching!? An Inquiry.

Matthew Lowe

For several days now, and as I write this paper, a muscle in my left forearm has been twitching vigorously on a regular basis. It is not painful, but I am always able to feel it while it is happening. In general, an episode of spasms begins suddenly and with great rapidity; about ten contractions per second. It then usually slows to irregularly-spaced single spasms, with the occasional double-twitch. All individual spasms are very quick; the contraction and release taking a fraction of a second. The twitch is visible: it appears that a narrow section on the right side of the large anterior muscle (the one that lifts the wrist) is being pulled forward about a quarter-inch. The visibly affected area extends over the inner elbow and about four inches up the upper arm. I had originally attributed the twitch to caffeine or stress, as I find that my left eye twitches in a similar way during periods where I am forced to drink lots of coffee and skimp on sleep. However, for the past few days I have consumed no caffeine and gotten a reasonable amount of sleep. I got some light exercise, and was moderately nervous for a musical performance last night. One possible strain on my left arm was a pain in my wrist from probably straining too hard, playing guitar for a more extended period of time than I am accustomed. Extensive stretching, massage, and more aggressive tactics have done nothing to slow the spasms, indeed, direct pressure on the area will not even stop spasms as they are occurring.

The first step in diagnosing this annoying and increasingly distressing affliction seems to be to determine what is actually twitching. It seems that only the muscle itself has the ability to actually move a part of the body, but of course muscles respond to nerve impulses. Could ligaments or tendons be malfunctioning and triggering these movements? It appears that this would not be the case, as ligaments merely connect bone to bone and tendons muscle to bone. They are made of soft collagenous tissue, and classification of these tissues are based on stiffness of the "crimp" of the tissue and its resistance to load under pressure (1). These characteristics do not seem to suggest the capability of autonomous movement. The same is the case for actual nerves. The action, therefore, must be in the muscle. Something, therefore, is triggering the irregular bonding and release of myosin heads to the actin filaments. This action is also, at a certain level, uncoordinated, because though the movement of the actual muscle is large, there is no visible translation to a bone, moving a limb. Perhaps the "power stroke" of the muscle is so short, and in a small enough section of the muscle that it overcomes the deformation curve of the tendon. However, the timescale of this phenomenon is far shorter than the muscular action I am experiencing. Perhaps the muscle in question serves another purpose. The two strongest possibilities for identity of the offending muscle, based on the line the spasms trace, are pronator teres or the flexor digitalum superficialis (2). There is little reason to suspect the second, as it is a deeper muscle, and much more of it would likely move if it were to misfire. The pronator teres appears exactly the proper size and shape. This muscle originates at the Medial epicondyle of the humerus and at the coronoid process of the ulna, and inserts at the middle of the lateral surface of the radius. In other words, at the very bottom of the humerus, a few inches down the ulna, and between them on the radius, respectively. The muscle pronates and flexes (rotates and bends) the forearm at the elbow. Though it appears that the bulk of forearm flexion is performed by the Brachialis, most pronation is done by the pronator teres, further confusing the question of why my arm remains still when the muscle twitches (3). The muscle is innervated by the median nerve, a common site of nerve compression and repetitive stress syndromes. There exists a pronator teres compression syndrome, but it is fairly rare and its symptoms include pain in the area, weakness in the hand, certain types of palsy in the fingers, and do not include twitching of the muscle (4). None of these apply to my situation.

A visit to a medical reference site querying "muscle twitch" yielded information I had assumed at the beginning of my inquiry. Barring neurological disorders such as Lou Gehrig's disease and Muscular Dystrophy, causes of muscle twitching were simple: caffeine, excessive exercise, stress, a diet deficiency. The former three I was willing to rule out in my situation, but it is possible that there has been a deficiency in my diet. Returning to institutional food has greatly increased the proportion of meat in my diet, which had been significantly reduced during the summer, and it seemed particularly high in the past week. Further research suggested that spasms and cramps could be caused by a calcium deficiency resulting from high protein or phosphate intake. A deficiency in pantothenic acid (Vitamin B) were pointed to as a cause, but several prime sources of the vitamin were part of my diet in the period in question. A high Magnesium-to-Calcium ratio in the body was another cause. It is true that most recently, green vegetables and legumes, the major sources of magnesium, had not been in adequate proportions in my diet, but this would presumably result in, if anything, a low Mg/Ca ratio Consuming foods containing lactic acid was pointed to as a possible strategy (6). In the end, it was unclear exactly what could be done on a dietary level to correct this ratio, as consuming more of one mineral would block absorption of another in a complex web, and it would be impossible to be certain of the proportions in my body without knowing the proportions in the foods I ate, without having kept careful track of what I had eaten in the period in question.

Would there, then, be anything that could be done in the short term? It seems to stand to reason that the malfunction of myocin in the muscle would be triggered by the synapses of a nerve going haywire. Is there any way that the functioning of a cluster of nerve cells could be directly impacted? A relationship between electrical pathways in the body and acupuncture came to mind. Most charts of acupuncture meridians that I was able to find related the acupoints to organs, as opposed to specific muscles or limbs, which seemed like a dead end. This was interesting, however, as it was indicated that Eastern medicine traditionally conceived of disease as a collection of symptoms rather than a unified state of the body, which would suggest that their treatment strategies would target various body aches outside of the major organs in the trunk or head (8). Another article indicated that "The change of electric activity is part of signal transduction and can precede anatomical change," but that some electromagnetic patterns in the body mapped by a SQUID (Superconducting Quantum Interference Device) are consistent with the meridian system, but not necessarily "any major nerve, lymphatic, or blood vessel" (9). The author goes on to note that "An "annealing" mechanism may play a role in acupuncture and related techniques: Small perturbations at singular points elicit a "shock" to the system - activates and shakes the biological system out of its abnormal and unstable state. After activation, the system has a better chance to settle at a normal, more stable state." It seems likely that acupuncture could have an effect on my own particular malfunction, if it is in fact related to the electrical impulses in the muscle, but it seems that to find out exactly how would require the involvement of a specialist, or, as the web seems to indicate, the purchase of a book.

In the end, this particular spasm episode will likely soon come to an end, but a few questions still remain unanswered in my mind. First: if, for instance, the spasms were caused by a nutritional deficiency, why would that macro deficiency manifest itself in one section of the body for an extended period of time? Second: another article outlining the system of nerve impulses involved in a reflex reaction demonstrated the level of communication necessary to return a reflex impulse to its point of origin. What if my left pronator teres or its median nerve thought that it was receiving an impulses and was actually responding normally? If so, what could this false impulse have been caused by? Most of my confusion arises from the specificity in manifestation of a generalized explanation. What is so different about this particular assembly?

1) Notes for a U-Michigan biomechanics course

2)Contents of upper limb and back, drawings of macro anatomical assemblies

3)Upper Extremity Muscle Atlas

4)eMedicine, Hand and nerve compression syndrome overview

5)National Institutes of Health, NIH Reference Site

6)Acu-cell, Nutritional causes of muscle spasms and cramps

7)Acu-cell, nutritional mineral ratio primer

8)The Med-Com Resource, Acupuncture primer

9)The Meridian System and the Mechanism of Acupuncture, Article on acupuncture research




Comments made prior to 2007
i'd be very interested to know what your final conclusion is. i've just had this same phenomenon start approxiamately three days ago. as you said, it doesn't hurt...it just makes me stop and take notice. i hope it's nothing. my activities/habits have not changed one iota ... Scott, 6 September 2007

Comments

Anonymous's picture

I have suffered from these

I have suffered from these very annoying tics for years and have seen many neurologists. They diagnose then as "benign fasiculations" and don't seem to take them seriously. If they only knew how annoying they are. I have a daughter and granchildren who suffer from these also. I have considered suicide, but wondered if these tics would continue after death. They are just that annoying. I can't sleep, they disturb my work. Can anyone out there help me. Valium seems the only thing that helps some, but doctors will not prescribe it and I am afraid of the terrible withdrawal symtoms even if I were to take them as I have in the past.

Some person's picture

Myoclonic twitches is what

Myoclonic twitches is what you all are describing. They are caused by stress. They are benign. I was worried a few years back because I have epilepsy and was wondering if it was coming back and manifesting it in a different way.(I have the grandmal ones) The places that twitch like that for me are my left bicep, my right thumb and index finger, and various muscles on my back. I asked my neurologist and she said not to worry that it was benign, and that everyone gets them from time to time. Although it is a sign of various neurological diseases, for the most of you it is benign. For me I was able to figure out that they have a higher intensity of happening when I am stressed and have less sleep. Stress in both physical and mental. I had them happen a lot when I was doing some hard labor on a mountain 10 hours a day 4 days a week. Or in finals week in college. Now they still happen every day, but, not as intense and not as long.

Also, I hiccup a single hiccup randomly though out the week. This is also a mycolonic twitch.

Also, sometimes right before I go to sleep I have a spasm that wakes me up. Like I am falling or something, sometimes I will yell as I wake up. I looked this up as well, it is also benign and not related to epilepsy. It is called hypnic jerk, or sleep jerk (also some people say are a form of mycolonic twitch). It also happens to everyone. And happens when you are stressed or sleep deprived.

So, lesson of the story is try to be less stressed and get more sleep and the intensity of these occurring will be less. If you feel this is progressing to something more, there is medication for it, that should lessen the attacks, but, not necessarily get rid of them. I was on Phenobarbital at the time these started, I am finally off all medication, and I still get them as frequently as I did without them. But, I had been on that med since I was 4 (was about 27 when I finally got taken off of it) so, I may have been immune to the effects of the meds.

From reading some of your post I think I can say what most of you are describing is benign. Don't worry about it. I hope this helps calm your fears of what it is and what it isn't.

Tom's picture

calves twitching

Both legs twitch when not being used or stetched in my calves. This started a year ago as i started working out for cardio.the more i pay attention to it the worst it gets, have done massage and accupunture with no help,.........plz. advise.

Anonymous's picture

i have the same exact

i have the same exact problem. i have calf twitching - i can see the individual muscle fibers moving. i been to many doctors and they all say that its from working out. i notice it some days more then others. sometimes its really bad and at times i dont even notice it. im the type of person that needs to work out 5 days a week - i have yet to try stop working out to see if it stops.

Anonymous's picture

Stress and not eating right

Well this is my first time having spasms in my life that last for more than a couple of seconds , I was going through a different work shift and that's when it started , I was working early in the morning then I went to night shift , then me and my girl broke up and then I went from eating almost 3 meals a day to maybe eating once a day out of a snack machine and as time passed of me stressing and not eating they have gotten worse and worse but without any pain , my point is I want everyone to stay positive about your situation , the good news is when I went over my mom's for Thanksgiving and ate a lot of food and stopped stressing they went away for 3 days , then I came back to my house and my ex made me start stressing again lol here there are again , I think it has a lot to do with starving yourself and going to stress especially when your young , the more sleep I get and the less stress I take in they go away for long periods of time , I even tried to make something twitch but it would not until I started stressing again ,

Anna's picture

twiching.....

Look for BFS on the internet (Benign Fasciculation Syndrome)Hope it is helpfull!

Anonymous's picture

wrist/ forearm muscle twitch

was good to read the suggestion of biking as a cause. leaning forward on the handlebars w/ bent wrist, is probably the cause for me too...
also possible long hours on the computer and left hand mouse use.
ancillary effects numbness and pins and needles in the hand and arm, especially at night (when else?)
twitches seem to be more rapid pulsating w/five six or seven twitches. can't control even by grasping muscle.

doctor suggested carpal tunnel... I thought that would cause hand problems... I don't understand the feedback thing.

am 74 and do about 15-20 miles of biking four days a week...
and :) more hours on computer than I''l admit to,
nuisance with the twitches...
good to read different posts, and find that most consider this an annoyance, but not life threatening.

good thread. thanks, all.

Anonymous's picture

Left Arm Twinge Twitch Sensation

Have strange twinge/twitch that always comes in -seemingly- same spot on outer part of mid upper left arm. No pain and comes and goes and eventually will go away for long time (assuming past history is indicator). Don't know if is diet, medicine related or what. Haven't had problem for months but has been coming and going for at least a couple years. Am on kumiden(sp)/warfarin, pepcid/famotidine and atenonol which may be related it to as I have been running short on all of these past few days. Related to the warfarin I tested high out of range (3.9). Anybody have similar issues or have knowledge related to these specifics?
Thanks

Anonymous's picture

i have made a possible discovery for the cause

Nerve damage to my back and left arm may be whats causing the twitch in the upper area of my left arm, i dont know if the same could be said for all of you but im sure that is whats wrong with me.

Robert's picture

Left Arm Twinge Twich Sensation...

Yup, I have the same symptoms even right now as I am typing..I to have the exact same Twiching in my left arm on the outside/mid muscle.
I have noticed this onset over the last couple of days and last night I had a hard time sleeping because it was coming and going all night long.
Two things come to my mind, 1. I tend to lean on my left elbow while I'm on the computer, whether my left elbow is on the arm of my chair or leaning on the desk I have sensations in the elbow area that are slightly numb like that area is asleep..this is when the twiching is very active about every thirty seconds to a minute.
2. This I find very intereting..while at rest and the twiching was active, about every minute. I would have my left arm fore fingers on my neck to feel my pulse while I had my right arm fore fingers lightly feeling the twiching on my left arm..the twiching stopped (I was thinking eletrical rythyms..) but this is not the case. they are independent of each other as I relaxed more..the twiching became less active and I finally fell asleep..I felt ok most of the day with no twiching, until tonight! and it's very active again...! can anyone help? Its annoying when you can't sleep in any (left arm) position and your muscle twiches by itself!It's all you focus on when you are trying to relax to sleep...

joeylines's picture

Me too, kinda...

I've had this "twitching" thing too, but I've had it for years now. It occurs mainly around major muscle areas (upper arm, thighs, torso,) but even sometimes in my face (though its so small that its not visible even though I can feel it significantly). I was cat scanned for an unrelated (head injury) reason back in August 2008 and they said there was nothing wrong with me (I wonder if they'd see something if it isn't related to the injury in question, e.g. finding multiple sclerosis when scanning for a concussion).

It seems like I'm able to initiate the twitching sometimes by utilizing the muscle group. For instance, closing my eyes really tight can cause my eye lids to twitch on occasion. Also, stretching as one normally would may sometimes cause some twitching afterward in whatever area was most strenuously stretched. I only ever remember one instance when the twitching was very distracting and that was a day after a heavy night of drinking. That morning (and for the rest of the day), I experienced some intense twitching that didn't cease like it normally does. It freaked me out and I kinda drew a conclusion that the alcohol might have been a part of the unusual intensity and prolonged nature of this twitching. I've basically come to terms with the fact that SOMETHING is OFF within me, be it neurological or otherwise. I just wanna know what it is.

I'm not a hypochondriac, but I'm certain that either something is wrong with me or I'm DOING something wrong. Hmmm... Good luck to everyone, regardless.

Anonymous's picture

Normal Face: -_- My face: -_-

Normal Face: -_-

My face: -_- ~_- -_- ~_- -_- ~_-

Who can relate?

Anonymous's picture

My twitches seem to be teh

My twitches seem to be teh same as described here. The intensify with stress and if I can force my muscles to relax it abates somewhat but forced relaxing is only stop gap. I think we need to relax on a more permanent basis to stop the twitching.

Anonymous's picture

Twitching because of dietary changes

I have been fasting for the month of Ramadaan, and it has been arrpoximately 25 days. I have not had much in my diet , except for rice at dinner. About three days ago, my upper right arm began to twitch and it has been doing so for every half an hour. Reading the past comments, I beleive this can highly possibly due to a change in dietary routine.

Anonymous's picture

hii...salaami

i have same prb started between 20th ramadan...

but now i am feeling pain in hands
kinda pin and needles....
i am having toilet problems also....

u too have same problem or ur cured??

i am afraid of M.S & A.L.S !
i am in saudi arabia riyadh..here...this doctors cant understand
i am going to india now....i'll do check up there

neurologist!!

Penny's picture

Hi I just wanted to let you

Hi I just wanted to let you know i know what your going through . I have m.s. and those symtoms sound so filmilar
i know u may not want to hear that but plz get checked by a neurologist thanks and good luck, Penny

Keiron T's picture

17 years old and twitching

i've been experiencing similar things to some of you. at first i nearly freaked out. i'm so relieved to know that other people know what i'm going through. I've been twitching randomly for maybe a couple of months. i'm in college and always roaming about.my diet is shockingly bad. i've already undergone surgery for a birth defect (fibular hemimelia)and have had four operations in the last 18 months for that reason. mostly its in my thighs but has happened in many other places including my chest,stoumach,arms,hands and neck.It was brought to light by my thumb going crazy. i often notice that its worse on days when i'm stressed, lack excersize and don't eat properly. should i try magnesium and calcium supplements or maybe even overhauling my entire diet? should i seek medical attention?? please help if you know anything.

Anonymous's picture

well... my muscles twitch

well... my muscles twitch also. this bout I am currently experiacing is on its 45th minute. That's how I ended up on this website. right now its my left forearm. It's always my arms or legs. I am fit. my ditet is okay. Hope its not onw of those diseases some of the comments say it might be. Intrestingly though, my twitches intensified after I started smoking ciggaretes. Maybe that has something to do with it?
Another reason why I should quit smoking.
I just turned 18... the last thing I want to know is that I will have this potentially dibilatating disease in the future... with that said, I simply must know what the cause is!

Anonymous's picture

Neurological disease

Not to alarm any of you but there are diseases of the nervous system that also cause twitching and movements..Huntingtons disease is very rare but in my family. Try having eye twitching and thigh twitching for a couple years not knowing if you have this disease or not. There is a test but I have chose not to be tested unless I have extreme obvious signs..personal chose.

RLR's picture

Ah, this is crazy - I'm 16 and I twitch all over!

I was beginning to freak out, but I see a lot of you people experience the same thing. I have been googling and searching all over the place. I all the other sites led me to believe I had some bad disease. But I ONLY experience twitching. Nothing else. Sometimes I have achey sides and stuff, but it's mainly just twitching.

But I mean, I don't twitch in one localized area, it's everywhere on me - arms, legs, feet, eyes, thighs, stomach muscles even! It just can start up there, it's not like it's continuous throughout the day, it'll just randomly show up in different parts of my body.

What I don't understand is that I eat healthy, and I'm fit! I'm even a ballet dancer. So what could just sporadically cause it? I've tricked myself into thinking I have some disease. Hehe...But, it doesn't really HURT, it's just this annoying twitching feel. And my feet sometimes feel like they're buzzing or something? But I can never put my finger on it. (No pun intended...haha) Like, I can never figure out what causes it, where it starts. Sometimes it's 1,2 or 3 twitches, then it's 10-15 twitches consecutively in one minute. It started almost 3 months ago, and it's pretty annoying. I notice that I seem to twitch more when I'm sitting down...!? Or if I hurt myself, or something freaks me out and it makes my heart beat - I sometimes feel twitching start up! It's like I have all these extra hearts beating, and it's annoying.

I'm wondering if it's a posture thing? Would going to a chiropractor or something, help? My mom (who is an RN and a nutritionist) acts like it can't be serious. I mean, I only just turned 16.

I just can't figure it out.

Serendip Visitor's picture

a reply to your comment!!

i was a gymnast for 11 years..and im 17..
my muscles have been doing the same thing since i was 15..
and i eat pretty healthy as well..

its nothing serious..
its most likely since our bodies are used to physical activity that whenever we relax or sit, as you said, that our muscles get anxious..
no matter how much calcium or potassium i take..
my twitches never go away..

so i wouldnt worry about it..
it should go away as soon as our bodies stop growing..

Da Vinci's picture

Right bicep twitch

My right bicep has been twitching on and off for hours at a time for a few days now I had been exercising about twice a week for a few months and recently stopped altogether in the last couple of weeks but did do some weighlifting two days ago, which I felt sore from. However, the twitching started before the weighlifting. Also, I have significantly changed my diet in the past week, which makes me want to point to that as the culprit. However, the change in my diet consisted of an improvement in what kinds of foods I eat, which makes me wonder. For the past week I have been eating a healthy grain-rich, protein-rich diet and adding ground flaxseed to my cereal for essential fatty acids. I have also been including blueberries for their anti-oxidants. I have also been eating lots of salads, whole grain bread and taking vitamin supplements including specific vitamin E supplements, krill oil (for Omega 3's) gelcaps and have cut caffeine out of my diet. My confusion is that my diet is the healthiest it has ever been in my life and i've recently been taking great strides in reducing the level of stress in my work and personal life so why the twitch still? It has only been a few days so perhaps it's too soon to worry but one can't help but take notice of that kind of new strange autonomic muscle activity. I will attempt to restrict my protein intake and see if that has an effect. If I don't post anything new, then it probably worked.

Serendip Visitor's picture

Hi I have had the same

Hi I have had the same problem for years. I play sport at a fairly high level and noticed when I got injured and was unable to work out I suffered from prolonged twitching in my triceps mainly on the right side. After much investigation by myself the Physio and our conditioning trainer we found it was common place amount injured players unable to work out or during the start of the off season. The twitching is the muscle wasting away thus why this happens in periods of down time

LAP in Ohio's picture

My upper left arm is twitching too...

I am a 63 years old male. My upper left arm started twitching about three days ago. It is very annoying. I ride a bicycle about 13 miles, 3 or 4 times a week. My hands become numb and my wrists hurt from the (forward leaning) pressure on the handlebars. I suspect the twitching is from pinched nerves in my wrist. It could be aggravated by my terrible diet of sugar, caffeine, and other stuff that is bad for you. I don't want to give up the bicycling because it is great fun and good exercise. I will try to keep the pressure off my hands and wrists, if I can. I will try to improve my diet. Hopefully the twitching will go away over time. Getting old is no fun...

Shivah's picture

T_T feeling like donkey from shrek

look at my eye twitching. ~-~; well mostly its my arm, upper left between elbow and shoulder, exactly as described. Glad im not alone, seems I have to change my diet, I knowww i'm not getting enough exercise, but its been about 3 days now of the twitching, and it hasn't gone away like other times. So I'm taking a walk, booking an appt. to see my doctor =] and not eating delicious cake T___T i luv cake.

Anonymous's picture

It may be diet, but those

It may be diet, but those who think it must be (and are loudly cajoling those who may eat meat, most people do and do not twitch) need to calm down. I just googled upper arm muscle twitch and ended up here. A muscle in my upper arm started visibly twitching about ten minutes ago and is getting less frequent and more erratic, but it is still there. It is not my heart beat, I checked my pulse, and I have concluded (reassured by the helpful original post) that is is some arm muscle. I am a vegan, eat organic when I can, do not have a nutrient deficiency (I make sure of it considering my diet), rarely drink and recently cut back on caffeine. I cut back on the caffeine because it was making my eyelid twitch. Last night I had four drinks and I think I may be dehydrated and tired, making the muscle angry. I tried some stretches, to no avail. So I am going to keep up the hydration and stay away from caffeine, booze and salt (they are all diuretics) and see if that fixes the problem (like it did with my eyelid).

23waterlily's picture

Twitching

PEOPLE!

It's called TOXINS. It's in your food, environment etc. that's why people think it runs in families, cuz they eat the same things!

The fillings in their teeth, fluoride in the water and our toothpaste. Teflon on our pots and pans. And it goes on and on.

Educate yourself. There's tons of literature out there. It's a scientific fact that "dis-ease" can't grow in a body that is alkaline.

Stay off the sugar and fake-sugar, aspartame is sooo bad. It's a neuro-toxin.
Get off the white doughy stuff.

Eat better. Learn about what your body needs. People know more about their cars than they do about their physical bodies.

FYI: Medications made in a lab out of chemicals do not heal anybody! All they do is mask the problem. Temporary relief.
Everyone must take responsibility for their own health.

Anonymous's picture

agreed.

Lay off the booze for longer. Withdraw causes twitches as well .

Anonymous's picture

Not sure about the science behind your claims

"It's a scientific fact that "dis-ease" can't grow in a body that is alkaline."

http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/DSH/coral2.html

Anonymous's picture

Just to let you know

I was diagnosed with narcolepsy 5 years ago, the twitching similar to this occurs in my eyelids, forearm, bicep, sometimes my thighs and sides and it is not at all caused by diet. Though some twitching can be caused by dietary imbalances, usually with caffeine, or other stress or sleep related issues, it may also be a number of neurological disorders. I suggest, if you have the opportunity, get a sleep study, most American state governments provide health share or some sort of insurance for those who need it. If you take the test and it is clear, you have nothing to worry about, try altering your diet a bit. However if you are like me, and have narcolepsy, a lot will change, I get disability, but I am also a student, I cannot drive, I am treated on medications but I feel so much better. For years I struggled with EDS or Excessive Daytime Sleepiness, and other side effects of my disorder like Catalepsy which made me fall at random times and it was very disheartening, I even dropped out of high school because of it. Do not let this rule your life, find out for sure and consult a doctor.

Serendip Visitor's picture

To 23waterlily

If its in our food, environment, what can one eat or do to better their selves. Because as I am sure you are aware probably half of the grocery store contains sugar, aspartame and what not, what do you do to help with dieting and controlling the bad toxins? If its just staying on a vegetable and fruit diet, that's hard for many.

Matt's picture

Okay first of all your

Okay first of all your wrong. I'm sure you have no way of proving this. its probably having to do with mal nutrition or over exertion of muscles. Sense it a muscle, and its contracting on its own, means that it has to do with the nervous system. The nervous system uses CHEMICALS to operate.. so if you haven't been eating what it uses then there is your problem.

Second, medications do heal especially when your dealing with chemicals in the brain. You must be pretty dense to think that you can't do good with chemicals. Chemistry plays a big role in human health.

and your remarks about toxins found in everyday life are well known. If people didn't know these they must be living in a hole.

your "scientific fact" is wrong, here is some evidence...
http://www.quackwatch.com/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/DSH/coral2.html

Anonymous's picture

Uhhmm...

Most of the time medications are indeed made to pretty much cover up the problem. You can take herpes meds but do they cure herpes? No. What about arthritis, and high blood pressure? I'm not saying you're wrong but you're not exactly right.

Anonymous's picture

Unless you are a PHD who has

Unless you are a PHD who has completed clinical studies on the subject, I don't think you should be telling anyone they anyone they are wrong. If a chemical like aspartame and MSG can cause lesions on the brain would it not be plausible that they COULD interfere with the nervous system and cause twitching?

And actually from the research that I have done there is some legitimacy in the alkaline diet theory. The link you posted is likely bunk.

From my experience conversing with people, few are aware of all of the toxins we encounter on a daily basis. I even read today that some shampoo even contains harmful agents that can be linked to cancer.

Anonymous's picture

Wow. that very quick post of

Wow. that very quick post of yours just changed my life, I never really cared much about my huge disgusting proccesed diet, because Ive always been a slim girl because of my excersise routine. But now that all of these health problems are slowly popping up your explanation makes sense, Im going to throw away all my damn pills and start on a new diet today!

Milos Korac's picture

Twitching Dominican Republic

37, smoke, coffee, lately I eat a lot of junk food in Santo Domingo... Today twitching started after the second coffee, in a morning, some heavy expresso... I work with computer lets say 10 hours a day, could be more. Noticed that glass table affects my right hand, and twitching is on the right hand. I am a super hypohondriac person anyway. Its not ulnar nerve, but muscle spasm, stress, and food. (I hope)

That is why I found this website....

Images: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e7/Gray528.png
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c9/Gray1235.png

Definition: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/twitching

Also, as I am not an English spoking person, I was searching Google for: Pulsating artery right arm Pulsating sensation right arm Ulnar

Anonymous's picture

Input

For those worried about ALS, that should be on the very bottom of your list of worries. Very rare and hard to diagnose. Also, if you have sensation where there is twitching, it is not ALS. ALS is not accompanied by tingling, electric feeling or whatever. It is just twitching, spasms and cramps. If it is tingling, numb, burning or an electric sensation it is probably a nerve being pinched. People do not realize the kind of stress they put on their body and how the body reacts to that stress. Example, I used to bowl all of time and I built the strength up for the movements neccesary. However, after some time, I went bowling on Sunday and yesterday I woke up with a twitch in the thumb and a tingling/electric sensation in my wrist and hand. That tells me it is a nerve problem. Seriously people, ALS is so rare it should not be considered until all ideas are exhausted. The only time you should worry is if you have considerable weakness and are over 50 years old, still should be at the bottom of the list.

Anonymous 's picture

Suggestion: MRI / CAT Scan etc'll show nothing at all for TD

"It happens to me all over my body, including the nerves in the temple area. I had MRI and CAT scan done about 1 year ago and came up with nothing."

Suggestion :

If such Arm twitching / repeated uncontrollable twtiching movements of the extremities are actually medical symptoms of Tardive Dyskinesia / neurological / neuromuscular side effects of certain medications, then such MRI / CAT Scan and any other related medical imaging / physical / miscellaneous medical examinations would not be able to conclusively detect, reveal and diagnose anything abnormal / problematic at all.

This is actually because of the underlying fact that, in the case of Tardive Dyskinesia - bodily chemical imbalances caused by interferrences with / disturbances to the synaptic activities of the neurons / neurotransmitters
chemicals such as dopamine (which are essential for co-ordinations of every bodily movement, including the arms / other extremities etc -which are essentially and extremely liquidly, streamy, fine, subtle and faint, if not, highly transparent, by the related nerve-disturbing medications, such a medical scenario actually cannot be conclusively and definitely observed, detected and diagnosed by such MRI / CAT-Scanning and any other related medical imaging / physical / miscellaneous medical examinations at all.

In such a connection, please consider the following excerpts : -

"Chlorpromazine side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop taking chlorpromazine and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

twitching or uncontrollable movements of your eyes, lips, tongue, face, arms, or
legs;"

which are quoted from the website :

http://www.drugs.com/mtm/chlorpromazine.html

and

"Tardive dyskinesia is a variety of dyskinesia (involuntary, repetitive
movements) manifesting as a side effect of long-term or high-dose use of dopamine
antagonists, usually antipsychotics. Other dopamine antagonists that can cause tardive dyskinesia are drugs for gastrointestinal disorders (e.g. metoclopramide) and neurological disorders. While newer atypical antipsychotics such as olanzapine and risperidone appear to have less dystonic effects, only clozapine has been shown to have a lower risk of tardive dyskinesia than older antipsychotics"

"Tardive dyskinesia is characterized by repetitive, involuntary, purposeless movements.Features of the disorder may include grimacing, tongue protrusion, lip
smacking, puckering and pursing of the lips, and rapid eye blinking. Rapid
movements of the extremities may also occur. Impaired movements of the fingers may also appear. For comparison, patients with Parkinson's disease have difficulty moving, while patients with tardive dyskinesia have difficulty not moving."

quoted from :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tardive_dyskinesia

Serendip Visitor's picture

muscle twitching

I have noticed the twitching for several months now. Its mostly when I am relaxed or asleep. Its usually my hand or in my legs althogh not painful. However, I do take antidepressant medications but these dont appear to cause the tartive dyskinesia. My doctor will check with me soon to see f it has gotton any worst. But sometimes I am afraid that it may be some type of disease. I am almost 40 and my 35 year old sister ws just diagnosed with MS

Anonymous's picture

left tricept twitching

Well I have to add my two cents to this one... and read from the very first post because My left arm has been twitching non stop for about a month. I am super paranoid because my ex husband had ALS. ALS is not contagious I know but I know what happens to the body, and a lot of the posts I have read previously have me very concerned for some folks that are twitching everywhere. My conclusion is that it is definatley excercise/stress/diet related.
I have been doing arobics on a regular basis then recently stopped about 3 weeks ago (excersise), as well as I broke up with my boyfriend a month ago(stress), and have not been eating right and loosing weight (diet).
With all those factors combined I am pretty sure everyone can figure it out.
I will be going to the gym tomorrow, I am positive I will be sore the next day and plan on going to the Chiropractor on Wed. I will see what he says at that point.
If anyone wants to know more please reply and I will let you know on Thursday 5-28-09.

Anonymous's picture

Right bicep twitch

I've been experiencing frequent muscle twitching in my inside right bicep. It's been going on for a couple of weeks now. No pain, just frequent, minor twitching that is visible, but not enough to actually move my arm. I exercise 3-4 days a week and take a vitamin supplement. I do drink about 2 cups of coffee a day (I use 2 Splendas per cup), mostly in the morning. But this has been normal for me throughout my adult life (I am 48). I do not sleep very well, usually waking up every two hours then falling back asleep. My job has become somewhat stressful recently, but I have been unhappy and anxious about my career for about 5 years now - typical middle age stuff. Diet wise, I try to stay away from carbs, but do eat a fair amount of vegetables. Haven't seen a Dr. yet..Any ideas why the twitching has shown up now?

SharingKnowledge's picture

Annoying Twitches Right thigh/Leg ,then left Delt...

I am a very healthy 33 year old woman; I have always worked out since high school, play every sport, do yoga and stretch religiously. In the past 3 months I have had two twitching episodes. One in my leg for 3 weeks solid (same muscle)..I thought it was an imbalance so I went to my doctor to get blood drawn and do an analysis. I will get the results tom. 7/28/09. (I’ll try to get back on here and let you know what she found). That was 3 weeks ago. Since then I have been taking a special Mag/Potassium/b6 supplement at night. These twitches are SO annoying! I am strong so the twitch is strong now it's in my Delt and it happens all day/night. Falling asleep while my muscles are still moving is troublesome to say the least. I eat extremely well. The only change in my diet has actually included more salads and vegetables?? Maybe I am not working out enough for what my body is used to ???
"contraction is initiated somewhere in the central nervous system, either as voluntary activity from the brain or as reflex activity from the spinal cord."
"The calcium ions result in movement of troponin and tropomyosin on their thin filaments, and this enables the myosin molecule heads to "grab and swivel" their way along the thin filament. This is the driving force of muscle contraction."
Muscle Contraction turned off by:
Acetylcholine at the neuromuscular junction is broken down by acetyl cholinesterase, and this terminates the stream of action potentials along the muscle fiber surface." Source..http://meat.tamu.edu/muscontract.html +++
"reflex activity from the spinal cord."-----a chiropractor could help with this.
"voluntary activity from the brain "------- this could be a chemical problem like others have suggested, does anyone know if Ativan could effect this???

Anonymous's picture

To all of you who are

To all of you who are experiencing continous muscle twitching and movement, get an EMG. My 15 year old daughter had this happen to both thighs where they would uncontrollably move and flap, worse with exercise or movement. EMG showed hyperexcitability of the nerves. Look under Isaac's Syndrome, a rare condition that neurologists seem to think my daughter has. Still can't believe it; going to get other opinions and see more specialists and do more testing, but when you look at the symtoms of Isaacs and neuromytomia, many of you are experiencing these same type of symptoms. I am told that for many people they go undiagnosed for years and most doctors miss it, so worth checking into. I'm told I have good doctors to be able to make a diagnosis like this so quickly, but I'm still in shock thinking it can't be something so rare at only 15 years old. No family history of anything ever; it is just some rare autoimmune disorder that causes the perephial nerve to fire constantly. It is treated with medication like anticonvulsants, etc. My daughter is trying that now. Although this is not painful for her and seems to be confined to both thighs, it just isn't normal for muscles/nerves to do this continuously. To anyone who has symptoms like this, see a neurologist and get an EMG to test the nerves/muscles, and get yourself treated accordingly. I'm still in shock but if my experience with my daughter can help anyone out there get diagnosed and helped, I thought I'd put it out there. Good luck to all and God bless.

Teals's picture

I'd like to know more

I have the same symptoms, except its my right arm. I also read about possible ALS, Rheumatic Fever, Epilepsy and a few other things. However, I do workout with advanced cardio and weight training regularly. I took a rest week last week and the twitching started yesterday. I'm curious as to what you found out.

Teals

Anonymous's picture

The side of my hand has been

The side of my hand has been twitching for a few days now, which led me to this site. It's so odd to watch - it's like someone is IN my hand, with a little string attached to the side and pulling it in, little spasms, come and go. I feel it, a light tingling inside, nothing annoying, but it does make me stop and look. Was hoping for help to figure out what this is!

Anonymous's picture

Twitching Probs

I'm only a teenager, and I get these twitches EVERYWHERE!!! Sometimes I would be in the mirror, just washing my face, and I would see my upper eye lid twitch, It's the part right under your eyebrow, but right above the eye. When I look at it in the mirror,it looks like its sucking the skin in!!! That's really creapy, and I'm starting to get scared, because I think that it might be the marching band thats making it do that. I have to the doctor.

By the way, my marching band website is www.bsmtsmu.org feel free to visit!!

Anonymous's picture

also nice to know im not the

also nice to know im not the only one out there. my eyelids twitch and my biceps, but recently my upper back/shoulder has begun to twitch

Anonymous's picture

Really REALLY BAD TWITCH PLEASE HELP ME!!!!

I dont know why i do this but everybody in school are making fun of me. I have this horrible twitch. What happens is that i wink to my side all the way to my shoulder. It looks like a neck and eye spasm. Are there any kind of exercises that can make me stop? I really need help. Please

Serendip Visitor's picture

Tourettes syndrome?

Tourettes syndrome?

ChiChi O's picture

Thank you Jesus. I am not alone...

So. Greetings everyone,
I'm a chronic twitcher too. My twitching started back in junior year of high school, or at least that's when I really took notice of it. It has now been three years since that day I woke up with rapid muscle twitching between my shoulder blades that went on for about five or six hours.
I have had twitches throughout my entire body. A muscle that can twitch? You name it, it's happened. Fingers, palm, feet, sides of feet that control the toes, neck (so that it feels like I have 2 pulses FREAKY), elbow, knees, thighs, butt, ankles. Even at the APEX OF MY THIGHS (imagine, both legs close to the groin just going for a couple of hours, it was the worst day of my life). Even as I speak, my left elbow is going wild.
It has beena hell of a three years. I haven't seen a doctor...and my sister developed the same thing last year.
It's quite funny when it's not happening but when twitching is going crazy (I once counted 132 twitches a minute from one in my left bicep) you sure as hell ain't laughing. More like a fml moment that will last as long as the twitch.
I found that taking One-A-Day for women sort of lessened my twitches for a couple of days but I need to do it regularly for it to work.
I'm a college student and have late nights and a terrible diet and lots of stress so I don't really see it abating anytime soon for me. Yeah, maybe when I'm out of school but for now I'm resigned to a really annoying couple of years.
Good luck to all you out there!
P.S. Does anti-seizure medicine really not work? I guess a seizure is more of a muscle spasm so it makes sense...Heavens, when it's prolonged (as in a couple of days, wake me up in the middle of the night, close to tears b/c i need some goddamned sleep) I'm about ready to take a knife and cut off that limb!

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