At my wits end, spasms?

I am wondering if anyone has experienced something similar or has any suggestions.

For several years now I have been experiencing what I initially thought were super random muscle spasms. They would start in my neck or my side near my back and spread out until I was experiencing pain down my side, in my armpit, and down my arm. They typically start off painful and increase in intensity and spread out and then kind of just fizzle out.

I now suspect it’s nerve pain, though sometimes I can get it to stop spreading/getting worse if I stretch, it doesn’t always work. But it kind of feels like it’s following a nerve pathway - especially when it goes from my side up my armpit and then down my arm to my fingertips. Thankfully it lasts a few minutes at most and then it’s like it never happened. Though sometimes it’s like it’ll start and then fizzle and I’ll try to not move or move just right to get it to go away - like a charlie horse when you feel it start if you flex your toes real fast sometimes you can stop it but sometimes it’s just waiting for you to move wrong and blame it’s back? (I also get Charlie horses so easily!).

I’ve talked with both my Rheumatologist (I have psoriatic arthritis) and my PCP. The Rheumatologist suggested magnesium (not helpful) and shrugged. My PCP suggested electrolyte levels might be off but the blood test shows they’re fine. Other blood tests are normal (for the most part).

I’m at a loss. It doesn’t match the description of anything I’ve been able to Google and I have no idea what to do but it’s got to stop. I just had one so intensely painful it exceeded my tolerance (and my pain tolerance is pretty damn high!). Luckily it only lasted about 3 or 4 minutes but dang.

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I’m just out of a neck spasm that lasted pretty much five days. No idea why it inflamed like it did but it reduced me to tears at times. I could feel that was a tendon/muscle spasm. And I have to say magnesium helps those ones. Plus the ones in the calf or back of the thigh. Our inflammation can compress nerves too, so prehaps something like that is going on in your neck/shoulder. I can’t imagine magnesium is useful for that either. Ice might work on it. Has no one suggested a nerve conduction test to rule out a nerve issue? That’s about the best I can suggest to see what’s happening for you.

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It’s pretty much been them looking at me and going “that’s weird”. I haven’t suggested that it’s a nerve issue yet. It has only just been a thought for me. Tbh I have a hard time holding on to remembering what they feel like because it’s just blinding pain and then gone. And it’s so intermittent I can go weeks on end without experiencing one. I will definitely bug either doctor next time I’m in about it and see if we can figure it out.

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I realise it is much harder said than done, but if you can get the chance to observe next time it happens so you can give more detail in your description, it might be easier to recognise?

For example, initially you say it spreads from your neck down your arm (yes this sounds like a nerve pathway), but then that it goes from your side up under your armpit, then down your arm, and this doesn’t. Also, the only nerve pain I have had was pretty darn distinctive- like a bolt from an electric fence (or with a component of numbness) but more painful, not something I would mistake for a muscle spasm (which in my experience takes minimum painkillers and 4-8 hours to lessen if it is mild, or days as @Poo_therapy described).

Sometimes for me it takes repeated observations and reading about symptoms before I can translate what I feel to how the symptom is described in text. Claudication for example - now find me a good written description of that as a type of pain!

I hope you get to the bottom of it, it doesn’t sound fun.

Anytime I have muscle spasms I drink pickle juice. there is something in it that keeps them in check so check online about natural treatments for nerve pain, hey you never know what can help unless you do research.

I do have muscle spasms, usually in feet and legs. Horrid!!! Have you tried magnesium. It’s MARVELOUS for muscle spasms!

I took magnesium for months and it didn’t do anything. But thanks.

I have wicked back spasms in my upper back between my shoulder blades. I think it’s from the inflammation in my spine. My doctor put me on tizanidine at night. I take 4 mg about an hour before bed. This has been a godsend because it not only alleviates the spasms at night, but also keeps them at bay most of the next day. This med will make you extremely sleepy so don’t take during the day!!

Good luck with finding a solution. I hope this helps.

My functional medicine doctor recommended specifically Magnesium Glycolite which was not the type I’d found most available and it has really helped! I also soak in Epsom salts and make a spray of 50/50 water and milk of magnesium to apply directly on hands and feet. Using this specific magnesium - I found it in powder form - has made a huge difference with cramping which triggers the most horrific nerve pain. I hope this helps…

Sound so familiar. Ribs, back, arms, fingers, toes…

Sorry, but I have not found much that helps. For the “someone is pinching my fingers in a pair of pliers pain,” I use sports cold spray to “freeze” the tips of my fingers. That helps, but don’t overuse it.

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I find that non-prescription Voltaren Extra strength really helps on the fingers. Don’t bother with the regular stufff…lard does the same.