Leg cramps refer to painful involuntary contractions of the leg muscle, which may or may not be linked to an underlying disorder. Leg cramps is also known as muscle cramps and night cramps. There may not be any serious health concerns; leg cramps may have an effect on your movement and activity. Generally, long periods of exercise and physical labor in hot weather conditions may lead to muscle or leg cramps.
Dehydration and Muscle strains are the main causes for Muscle cramps. The underlying condition for muscle cramps is the insufficient blood flow to the muscles of leg and feet region and mild to rigorous exercise. Cramps stop after you stop the exercise.
Spine nerves compression may also produce cramps in the legs. In hot and dry weather conditions one can experience muscle cramps. These cramps is due to dehydration which depletes the body of minerals like potassium, calcium and magnesium.
Symptoms of muscle cramps especially in the leg region may cause moderate to severe pain. There may be swelling and redness of the skin. This condition is marked by muscle weakness and general fatigue.
Risks & Complications:
Generally, older people are at higher risk of muscle cramps. As they lose muscle weight, they experience greater muscle cramps. Pregnant lady with diabetes, nerve, liver or thyroid disorders experiences muscle cramps.
Tests & Diagnosis:
There is no specific test or diagnostics for assessment of muscle cramps. Severe cramps may be associated with swelling. Affected muscle may bulge, turn firm or become tender.
The doctor may look for the symptoms of muscle cramps. The regular treatment includes, giving some respite to the aching muscle or leg, and doing some stretching exercises. Minerals and multi-vitamins are prescribed by doctors as part of the treatment for muscle cramps.