Leg cramps and pain

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Jen77
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Date Joined Mar 2006
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   Posted 12/27/2007 4:02 PM (GMT -7)   
Monday morning I woke up to having what felt like a knot in my calf. My husband rubbed it out and it felt better. But I've been noticing some pains in both of my legs. So I did some reading online. Three weeks ago my doctor raised my beta blocker (blood pressure was high again). I have read that can be a side effect, but it's the same one I've been on for years without any problems. Just a higher dose. I have a call in to him, they are super busy coming back from the holiday, so who knows when I'll hear back.
 
I also read that it can be a sign of low potassium. Now this is something I've had problems with in the past. So I wonder if that could be causing it? Or maybe I even hurt myself. Who knows, I hate it when I can't figure things out!
 
Just wondering if anyone has ever had some leg pains due to low potassium levels, or any other advice/experience. Thanks!
~Jennifer
 
Diagnosed with mild Crohn's Disease 2/06 after sever GI bleed. Has been suffering since 1998. History of rectal fistula and gallbladder removal. Currently taking Asacol and Questran.


stkitt
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Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 12/27/2007 4:56 PM (GMT -7)   

Jen,

Low amounts of potassium, sodium, calcium, or magnesium in the blood can cause leg cramps.  I hope you hear back from your physician.

Knowing which med your take for your BP may help.  I am not a professional however and your physician is the one to make the dx of why you having the leg cramps.

Gentle Hugs

Kitt 


 
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CrazyHarry
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1034
   Posted 12/27/2007 6:03 PM (GMT -7)   
i know it is not technically the same thing, but when i was really anemica, i mean transfusion anemic, i would get the restless leg syndrome and cramping, but no real bad pains. so also with what stkitt suggested, it could also be from anemia (low iron levels) and low b-12 too as that also seems to decrease when one has anemia. once i got on iron and b-12 supplements they went away.
Crazy Harry

---------------------------------------------
Crohn's since 1993 (17 yrs old then)
surgery in July '05 - removal of 2 inches at ileum and 8 inches of sigmoid colon (had fistula into bladder)
Nov '05 developed colonic inertia; July '06 told i needed ostomy surgery
began maker's diet in August '06 - now feeling the best ever with no symptoms of colonic inertia and i kept my colon
med free as of 10/31/07


curley
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   Posted 12/27/2007 9:02 PM (GMT -7)   
I do not have this problem very much since my potassium is were it should be but when it was real low I would get them all of the time and I know that you are going to think that I am crazy but I would drink pickle juice and it helped my mother is the one that told me to try it and yes I did look at her like she had lost her mind.I hope that you get some relieve soon,
Curley
.........
 


Howlyncat
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   Posted 12/28/2007 7:22 AM (GMT -7)   
I like Curley have the probs when Potassium levels are way outta whack ..........
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Jen77
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Date Joined Mar 2006
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   Posted 12/28/2007 10:41 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks everyone, my doctor wants me to take a potassium supplement, he feels that's what is causing it. So we'll give it a try!

Kitt, my bp med is Toprol XL. He bumped me up to 50mg. He said he doesn't feel that's causing it since I've taken it at a lower dose for years. Hope he's right. But I'll give this a try and see if it works. It wouldn't surprise me as I don't eat a lot of fruits and veggies. Wish my stomach would tolerate them better! I've also had very low levels of potassium in the past. Only it was caught early on and I was put on supplements beforeI had any kind of symptoms. He just took a blood test a few weeks back, so I'm assuming he must have seen my levels as well.
~Jennifer
 
Diagnosed with mild Crohn's Disease 2/06 after sever GI bleed. Has been suffering since 1998. History of rectal fistula and gallbladder removal. Currently taking Asacol and Questran.


Howlyncat
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Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 12/29/2007 9:03 AM (GMT -7)   
I am glad you will be taking the potassium supplement......pickle juice does work as does other things but it would be best to follow docs orders first ya know ask him about the pickle juice .......

Let us know how you make out.
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ozonehole
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Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 559
   Posted 12/30/2007 11:24 AM (GMT -7)   
I also had some problem with leg cramps (which can be quite painful), and decided to take potassium as a supplement. After doing a little research, I decided NOT to use the potassium pills which can buy in any pharmacy.

Why? First off, they are expensive. Secondly, they contain very little potassium, so you need a whole lot. But most importantly, I read that they can actually cause irritation and even ulcers to the stomach and intestine lining.

I found a much better solution. You can buy potassium chloride as a "salt substitute" in most supermarkets. One brand is called "Morton Salt Substitute" and another is simply named "No Salt." There are some brands that are 50-50 mixtures of sodium and potassium chloride, but I don't recommend those, because most people already get too much sodium chloride (common table salt) in processed food.

The trick to protecting your stomach is to dissolve the potassium chloride in water. Drinking the solution straight tastes pretty bad, but mixed with a flavoring (like Crystal Lite) makes it taste much like Gatorade. In fact, that's really what Gatorade is - potassium chloride, flavoring, and sugar, dissolved in water. But making your own is much cheaper, plus you can experiment with different flavors.

How much should you take? An adult can use from 2 to 3.5 grams per day (2000 to 3500 mg). I don't take that much, and in fact you should be wary of overdosing. A big enough dose of potassium can actually stop your heart! You tend to need more potassium in summer when you're sweating.

I mix 1/4 teaspoon of potassium chloride in about 1-1/2 cups of water, with flavoring, and drink one of those twice a day. It's good to know that 1 full teaspoon of potassium chloride is about 2 grams, which is the maximum I would consider taking, and only on a hot day. Now being winter, I won't go over 1/2 teaspoon a day.

If you find that you're developing stomach pains, I'd reduce or stop taking the potassium, or increase the amount of water in the mixture. You obviously don't want to create another another health problem in addition to Crohn's.

Some fruits and vegetables are good sources of potassium (bananas, potatoes), and that's one safe way to increase your intake.

best regards,
Robert
Crohn's since 1988
3 resections


Jen77
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Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2691
   Posted 12/30/2007 3:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for a the info Robert. I found exactly what you said when I went to buy the pills. They contain a very small amount compared to what we should be getting. So I bought some foods that are supposed to be high in potassium. Felt I could get WAY more from one banana then I could from one pill! Which is just odd to me!

I'll look in to the salt subsititute as well, that's a really good idea! Thanks again!
~Jennifer
 
Diagnosed with mild Crohn's Disease 2/06 after sever GI bleed. Has been suffering since 1998. History of rectal fistula and gallbladder removal. Currently taking Asacol and Questran.


stkitt
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Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 12/30/2007 4:28 PM (GMT -7)   

K-Lyte / Potassium chloride comes in effervescent form. The RX from your physician would assure you get the exact amount your physician feels you need and repeat lab would show if you are back in the proper range.

There are many RX generics of this med so  if you have RX insurance this could be your best way to go. This is info only :)

The list of foods was great, I think I could handle them all except the pickle juice. eyes

Kitt


 
Co-Moderator Anxiety ~ Panic Disorders
Co-Moderator Crohn's Disease Forum
*~* Not a mental health professional at all *~*
Dx: Anxiety/Panic, Depression, GERD, Osteoarthritis
*Wife of a Crohnie*
******www.healingwell.com/donate***
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 

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