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    Spasms?

    I’m quite new to a spinal cord injury but the spasms I have are intense. Is there anything that would calm them down. Any advice is appreciated.

    #2
    Stretching is one thing you can try to do daily to help. On the forum you can search for post containing keywords to see previous discussions of a topic that interest you. When I searched "spasms" many post are found. To many about bladder spasms. So I changed the search to be "spasms -bladder". The "-bladder" excludes post with the word bladder. Hope this helps Good Luck.
    "Never turn your back on fear. It should always be in front of you, like a thing that might have to be killed." - Hunter Thompson
    T5/6 complete

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      #3
      Lots of people have both painful muscle tone (spasticity) as well as shaking type spasms. Some folks report using a standing frame and/or stretching helps but that always made mine way worse. I address it chemically, with medicine. What kinds of doctors are treating you? The right kinds know how to help you deal with this. My preference is to see a D.O., like a Physiatrist, specifically.
      "I have great faith in fools; self-confidence my friends call it." - Edgar Allen Poe

      "If you only know your side of an issue, you know nothing." -John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

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        #4
        Spasticity (abnormally high muscle tone) and spasms (involuntary movements) are two aspects of SCI/D that are seen in most people except those with very low cord injuries or with some spinal cord diseases such as spinal stroke, transverse myelitis, or polio.

        Most people do not have serious spasticity or spasm problems when they are first injured, even during their inpatient rehab stay, but as spinal shock subsides, spasticity and spasms can start to be a problem. Many people though don't get serious spasticity for up to 2 years post injury.

        Non-medication ways to handle spasticity include proning (sleeping on your stomach), daily range-of-motion exercises and stretching, and standing. Many people find that their spasticity is reduced after orgasm as well (for those able to have an orgasm).

        Suddenly increased spasticity may be a sign that something is wrong...like a pressure ulcer, UTI, or constipation.

        I would echo Oddity's suggestions above that you see a good physiatrist (who can be either a MD or DO) who is well versed in SCI/D and explore your options for non-medication spasticity management first, and only go to medications when these measures fail to keep it controlled. These non-medication and medication interventions will not make your spasticity go away completely; there are actually benefits to some degree of spasticity including maintaining muscle bulk, cosmetic better appearance of your legs, and decreasing your risks for DVT.

        Medications used include baclofen, tizanadine, dantrolene sodium, and sometimes diazepam. All can be sedating and should not be combined with alcohol. Some people with very severe spasticity that cannot be controlled with drugs may go for an intrathecal (into the cord) baclofen pump, but this should be considered a last resort. Botox can also be used for some, but works best for small, rather than large muscles, and it's effect is generally temporary (3-6 months for some).

        Who is following you now that you are home as your medical provider? Are they knowledgeable about SCI/D?

        (KLD)
        The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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          #5
          Hi Liz. I have intense spasms, too, and have found that I need to keep changing things up. Try different kinds of stretches (like chair yoga) if you can, experiment with body positions and props (pillows, for example), develop a "vocabulary" of approaches that you can select from. Sometimes I find something that seems to help, until it just...doesn't; but it might prove effective again, revisited months later. I haven't found anything that helps a lot, or consistently, because the signals that initiate spasms are too strong. But it's sometimes possible to lessen the discomfort they cause.
          MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

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            #6
            Sorry you're suffering. I hope things improve. I've been dealing with them for just about 41 years. And I'm sure some have had them even longer. You would think by now at least this problem would have been solved, but it hasn't. My spasms seem to originate in my feet and can be quite painful at times. They have gotten worse over the years, but I've avoided drugs since they have a bad affect on me. Also, they occur primarily at night, although they do happen during the day, at times. If yours are occurring during the day, try getting off your butt. If you can stand, do so - frequently. If they occur at night while sleeping, try laying flat on your back, but not for long periods so you don't develop pressure sores. Twisting my feet vigorously helps also, and may work for you, if they originate there. Ultimately, you'll have to figure out what works best for you, and that will probably keep changing. I wish you the best.
            Last edited by GreaseLightning; 9 Jul 2020, 10:05 AM.

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              #7
              Would medical cannabis be worthy of consideration?
              I don't have spasticity or spasms as my chair friends do. I do get terrible cramp-like through the one leg.
              I am keen on trying that plausible orgasm treatment that SCI Nurse mentioned.
              Solitary or not?

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                #8
                I do know antecdoctaly, that many of my patients felt that pot was one thing that worked well for them. Now that was back in the old days, when we didn't have medical marijuana. And not every state or country does have it. I would tell you that it is worth a try but before I went to that, I would try the non-medication techniques that have been suggested. Some of my patients report excellent results with proning, even for just an hour or two, others feel using a standing frame has been very helpful. It is very individualized as to what works and even when it works. ckf
                The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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