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Old 11-14-2002, 01:48 PM   #1
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Question Muscle Spasms and Thyroid

Hi All!~

I have been experiencing muscle spasms/twitching for several months now. I had random, tiny, little muscle spasms in just about every muscle in my body. They would be non-stop, day and night. I went to every doctor, had every test, and it was concluded it was all stress related. I went on Zoloft and Xanax, and they almost completely stopped. The only one that has been constant is my right eye. It always twitches!

I also have Hashimotos, but my TSH came back normal to borderline hypo. I suffer from anxiety, and I obsess over my health to the point it's upsetting. I also have been having a lot of trouble with my memory. I could be looking right at something, and can't seem to find it's name for several tries. ( i.e. "kids, put your food in the sink, I mean, bucket, I mean GARBAGE") It drives me nuts! I also experience pins and needles/numbness in my hands and feet during the night. I was told that people with Thyroid problems can have these problems along with twitching. Do you think it is worth investigating, or should I just accept (totally) what my Drs. are saying, that it's just anxiety?

I have seen an endo. he didn't think any of it related. He said he never heard of twitching as a symptom. I had an ultrasound done on my thyroid and they found a nodule, then an iodine uptake and they confirmed a nodule, they said it was nothing to worry about. and come back in 6 months for another ultrasound to make sure it wasn't growing.

Also my family has a history of thyroid disease. Mom had thyroid cancer and a thyroidectomy. Aunt had a goiter, cousin with graves.

Any thoughts/comments appreciated.

Kim




[This message has been edited by kim simone (edited 11-14-2002).]

 
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Old 11-14-2002, 09:15 PM   #2
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Welcome, Kim. Despite what your doctor said, twitching and tingling can definitely be associated with thyroid disease -- particularly if you have Hashi's, as a flare-up can accentuate symptoms.

I found a website that says the following:

Quote:
Low thyroid levels actually trigger muscle fibers to change their type, from fast-twitch fibers to slow-twitch fibers. This may be an adaptive strategy for coping with starvation, since blood sugar is low under hypothyroid conditions and fast-twitch muscle fibers require high levels of glucose to operate. Fatty acid levels in the blood are elevated to provide fuel for the fat-burning slow-twitch muscles. However, low oxygen in the blood due to slow heart rate and respiratory problems limits the slow-twitch muscles' effectiveness.
[url="http://www.csa.com/hottopics/thyroid/oview.html"]http://www.csa.com/hottopics/thyroid/oview.html[/url]


And there are many other sites that mention a connection between Hypothyroidism and tingling/twitching. (Do a web search on "twitch thyroid" and you'll see what I mean.) The brain fog is also a symptom of Hypo.

- First, get copies of all your test results so you can keep a personal history to correlate with your symptoms.

- Also, you should ask your doctor for an FNA biopsy. I know he told you that the nodule is nothing to worry about, but since the test is available (and given your family history), why not get the additional information?

- If your doctor is not willing to give you thyroid meds yet, you may want to try taking Selenium (200 mcg/day) to help metabolize your thyroid hormone and to fight any antibodies that may be present.

- You may also want to try Maca to help balance your hormones and support your adrenals.

You can read about all of these things (including What to expect from an FNA biopsy) in our Information Archive thread.
[url="http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/Forum118/HTML/000005.html"]http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/Forum118/HTML/000005.html[/url]


If your doctor won't listen, a second opinion wouldn't hurt....


Let us know what happens.

 
Old 11-15-2002, 05:28 AM   #3
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Thanks Artful

You really seem to know your stuff! I was surprised you mentioned low heart rate, and lack of oxygyn. Sometimes at night I get sleep apnea, and it seems like my heart rate is so slow and I breath so shallow that it's a wonder I am still alive! lol

I will seek another opinion. My endo is a Diabetes specialist and I think I would feel better knowing for sure that it was thyroid and not anxiety alone.

You're the BEST!

Kim

[This message has been edited by kim simone (edited 11-15-2002).]

 
Old 11-15-2002, 10:42 AM   #4
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Magnesium has been shown to help with muscle spasms and might help in your case if you are deficient in magnesium or even just low-normal.
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Old 11-15-2002, 10:48 AM   #5
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hi kim simone
Have the same thing. I watch at random my muscles shake like jello or twitch. I will be sitting talkin g to my mom and my thigh will start twitching and i will be obseessed to make her look at it to confirm that is what is going on. I tell my husband it is a symphony at times cause i will have a spasm going on in different places at once. sometimes i will go hours without any. I was talking to a person the other day who has graves. She is in the phase to try to get her Free t4 and tsh to where she feels good. They already nuked her thryoid. I went through thryoiditis (among other endocrine problems). I had a thryotoxic course and then went hypo and never recovered. since I have been upping my synthroid the spasms are less but are not gone. I am wondering if it is that my body was hyper once and all my tissues got use to have excess t4 and t3 and the nerve endings are damaged??? I am on 100mcg now and I may go up to 112mcg of synthroid. I am curious to see if that is going to help. A doctor putting you on an antidepressant for spasms is ludicrist. My doctor has given me soma (a muscle relaxer) for at night if it really bothers me. He says they are benign twitches he thinks they are thryoid related but is unsure but says i dont have depression and that is what is causing it. He has even given me a low dose of valium to help with it. Not for anxiety or depression but for the spasms. Valium has been used in the past for muscle injuries and spasms but physicians are reluctant to give it out fearing patients will get addicted and take their who presciption in a matter of a few days (too much fear with these docs). I like the soma though.

Do not worry too much. I use to think all the time it was MS. One more thing to think about is adrenal disease. Hashi patients are at risk for adrenal disease and that causes an imbalance in your sodium and potassium. SOme adrenal patients i have talked with said that before they had the confirmation of adrenal disease one of the first signs they had was muscle spasm and twitching especially after exercise.

I hope you will get some resolution to it. Dont you wish a doctor would say....I dont know...I believe you rather than them saying it is not thruyoid related? Agghh

 
Old 11-15-2002, 11:30 AM   #6
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Thanks all for the advise!

I did try magnesium for a while, but it didn't seem to help. Of course I only tried it for a few days. I'll give it another try and I'll also look into all the other treatments and possibilities you have mentioned.

JudeKate - My spasms are very much like yours. I try to get my husband to see them, but they come and go so quickly and it's never in the same place, it's hard for him to see. It reminds me of little Christams tree lights blinking on and off. There was a time that they seemed more severe and were more frequent and noticeable. But now I'm down to just a few per day. With the exception of my right eyelid, that's every few minutes! I went to neuros and had all the tests for MS and ALS I was obsessed too, and I think that's why they put me on anti-depressants. (They thought I was a hypochondriac because THEY couldn't find anything, it must be in my mind! I am somewhat of a hypochondriac, but I have doubts in this case)

It is so frustrating not having a doctor that really knows how to treat thyroid disorders in my area. I live in Florida, and we seem to have the WORST selection of Dr.s ever compiled in one area! I have have had more success researching things on my own and bringing it to them. They seem to know NOTHING and should be paying ME for MY time!

I'm planning a trip to Massachusetts and will see my old doctor. He was great and I'm hoping he can refer me to someone who is more competant!

In the meantime I welcome any suggestions or personal stories. It helps to know that I'm NOT CRAZY!!!!!

I will say though that being on the Zoloft has helped me tremendously. I seem to twitch much less and worry about it much less, and my general outlook is MUCH better. So there was validity in the anxiety/depression diagnosis. Twitching was just a BONUS!

Thanks AGAIN!

Kim



[This message has been edited by kim simone (edited 11-15-2002).]

 
Old 11-15-2002, 05:05 PM   #7
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Hi kim-

Zoloft is a drug that acts on neurotransmitters in the brain and wiill not only help you feel calmer (helping regulate the neurotransmitters when they get out of wack from anxiety) in the same fashion it could help the twitces and spasms working on the nerve endings. Any whoo, I did not want an antidepressant, my doctor did not even offer me one, but many are placed on them cause doctors say...oh you must be depressed. Well when you are sick or got something weird going on...yea anyone would have a degree of anxiety, then we start to think "maybe it is in my head" easy way out for the doc. I have had more luck with family docs and nurse practitioners. Endo's dont want deal with htat kind of stuff. But! you have to find the right doctor. I went through several docs before I found the one who is going to work for me...not him. I was never sick...so I never had a family doc. Then I got sick. When you dont have a relation ship established in the office before you get sick...they get this new sick person and if it is something weird and cannot put it together they say it must be in your head. Are you on thyroid meds? I have hashi antibodies...you can have your levels in the normal range and still be hypo...especially with hashis the antibodies block your t4 and t3 from working in your tissues. We just titrated my meds to where I feel good. You really need to have free T4 done and free t3. One endo told me if you divide the Free T4 range into thirds, most people feel good around the upper part of the middle range. I am right in the middle and I know I need to go up.

It took me a year to get help and my son is 28 months now...I am just starting to feel a lot better. A year ago I could only walk down the driveway and back when before I power walked 4 to 5 miles a day. Now I am back to 2 to 3 miles power walking again. It was not enough thryoid for me. I thank God everychance I get for my family physician. I thank God for this board. Meep, ArtfulD, Treefrog and many others have been very helpful when no one wanted to listen. Find a new doctor.

Judekate

[This message has been edited by judekate (edited 11-15-2002).]

 
Old 11-15-2002, 09:20 PM   #8
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HI JK,

To be honest with you, I don't even know what t3 or t4 is. I am pretty much in the dark with regard to my thyroid. I do know I am borderline hypo (can't remember number) and was told at 10 that I had hashi.

I don't have ANY other symptoms other than what I have explained before. I am not tired, I feel pretty darn good in general. It's just the twitching that has me upset. But right now (since zoloft) they are at such a minimum that even they don't bother me so much.

I am keeping a log of what you guys are telling me. I am going to get all my records, and find out the best course of action to take.

I want to figure all this out before it gets to the point where my health IS an issue.

Thanks again for all your help.

Kim

 
Old 11-16-2002, 01:42 AM   #9
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Kim also have yourself checked for hypoglycemia. Those with hypothyroid related problems are at great risk for this malfunction also. hypoglycemia is not as revelant as they once thought, but they are finding it is accoicated with low thyroid more and more. Wthy hypoglycemia you are nervous anxious, and your body seemes to tingle,,especially thelegs, and they will twich for the blood sugar imbalance. It is another avenue to explore. If you find it is a problem, you will not need the zoloft, just to regulate your blood sugar level by diet. Do not settle for the one time blood draw done at 8 hours fasting. You will need several blood tests done at 12 hours fasting if not a capilary draw 3 hour glucose tolerance test as opposed to a venous 3 hour glucose tolerance test. They are not just for pregnant woman.

[This message has been edited by snobunnies (edited 11-16-2002).]

 
Old 11-16-2002, 07:15 AM   #10
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Kim

If you were told you have hashis that long ago I would ask your doc to see where you are at now. I would tell them to run a TSH, free t4 and free t3 not plain t4 and plain t3. I woul also ask them to run the hashi antibodies antithyroglobulin and perioxidase (TPO). Simple blood test! If your antibody levels are high they need to further investigate. Click on the information archive and scroll down through the info. There is a lot of great info you will learn. Also a good book is the thryoid solution by rhida arhem MD. You can get it at any major bookstore or amazon.com. Take care judekate

 
Old 11-16-2002, 08:29 AM   #11
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Judekate,

Thanks for your help. I need all the help I can get at this point. Since my doctors have NO CLUE!

Kim

 
Old 11-16-2002, 09:28 AM   #12
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SnoBunnie!

I was also diagnosed with the hypoglycemia at 10!

It too has not been much of a problem as long as I remember to eat before I turn into the "excorsist" and my head starts spinning! LOL!

Kim

 
Old 11-16-2002, 11:40 AM   #13
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Kim -

I had a terrible time with my sugars when I was hypothyroid. I was nauseated but I had to eat in order to keep my BS up or I would get extremely dizzy, my heart would race and many other symptoms. Once I started on thryoid and titrated to the dose that I feel good at...I dont have sugar problems anymore. Having autoimmune thryoid disease does put you at risk for an increase chance of getting diabetes. But it doesnt mean you will get it. Hashis is an autoimmune disease. Your ANA is probably high from the hashis. I would get a new doctor.

Why dont you aske your doctor if you can try a small dose of thryoid? See how you feel on it? Your doctor sounds like he/she does not know much about hashis. Every endocrinologist has their own approach to treating hashis. I would get another opinion. Many endos that I know treat not by tsh but by antibodies.

[This message has been edited by judekate (edited 11-16-2002).]

 
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