Discussions By Condition: Muscle conditions

acute torso muscle spasms/cramps

Posted In: Muscle conditions 47 Replies
  • Posted By: nunleyjm
  • September 18, 2007
  • 01:18 PM

These "fat cramps", as I used to call them, have been occurring for at least 8 years. However, they are occurring more frequently and with more severity.
They are always in my torso area (that's why I have always referred to them as "fat cramps) and they always occur when I move in some way. I am unable to reproduce the occurrance at will, perhaps out of dread, but I can feel the muscles jumping and twitching in an extremely painful manner.
I am unable to stop the spasm and the pain is so bad that I can hardly breathe or move to ease the pain.
The spasms were always located somewhere along the muscles that cover my ribcage until just recently. Now they are extending to the abdominal muscles that leave the ribcage and go toward the inside of my hip bones.
If anyone has any idea of what could be causing this, I would truly appreciate sharing in the knowledge.
Thank you!

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47 Replies:

  • Please help! I have these symptoms too. Painful muscle cramps in my torso. I have been trying for years to find out what the condition is and what I can do about it. My doctor says she has never heard of such a thing and treated me with muscle relaxers. The muscle relaxers helped the symptoms at night, but made me drowsy, so I couldn't take them during the day. Calcium supplements seemed to help for awhile, as well. These spasms are extremely painful, seem to come on more frequently if I am over-tired. During the spasm I can barely breathe or speak, they are so intense. I, too have had the symptoms for a number of years, but as I grow older they are worse. Please help --- if you have any information.Thank you
    barbsul 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • I hear you. I too have been plagued by torso muscle pain. Like you, it has been getting increasingly more painful. The pains come and go. Three or four days may pass with no pain at all. Last Sunday was the worst. I laid down because I felt completely exhausted. The pains that hit felt like they were over my rib cage, sometimes in the front, other times in the back. I also have muscle pain in both my arms and muscle spasms in my legs and hands. These muscle pains are more bearable. When they hit my torso it is so intense I feel like screaming. I have had all the tests my doctor can think of but they all come back negative. Some occasional strange readings on my blood work. All my doctor can suggest is steroids. I am resisting steroids because they cause more problems than they help and because they are just a cover up not a cure or diagnosis.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Thanks for taking the time to reply. I talked to my doctor again this week about these muscle spasms. She just shook her head and prescribed another round of muscle relaxer. I agree with you about steroids and I am sure I would have made the same decision had my doctor offered it as an option. I just had my yearly blood tests done and am wondering if you can tell me what "odd" results yours indicated. There may be some similarity that could help us understand what causes these spasms. I will be happy to share any info that comes my way. I am sorry you suffer from this condition because I know what pain you experience -- but I can't help feeling grateful to learn that I am not alone -- without a diagnosis, with such severe pain, I have been very concerned that I had some rare and mysterious disease. At least, now I know that while it remains mysterious --- it's not quite so rare. Thanks again for your reply.
    barbsul 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • This just happened to me for the first time last night. It really scared me. i woke up with a lot of discomfort, and within a few moments my entire torso (stomach, back, hips, everything) felt like it was twisting and cramping all at once. i tried to get comfortable and breathe, but it hurt too much to even breathe and soon i was freaking out completely. i woke my friend up after about 20 minutes, and told her i needed to go the emergency room (between screams of pain of course). She got me a heating pad and calmed me down so i was at least breathing, and within a few minutes it was gone. Today, none of my muscles are sore at all, and the only thing i've noticed all day is that i'm queasy. of course i did sleep with the heating pad around me, so that might have helped my muscles not to be sore. i'm very scared that this will happen again, and i won't know what to do. i don't know why this happened, or even what did exactly happen to me. i just know that i don't ever want to feel that pain ever again. i don't know if these are the symptoms you were describing, but i certainly hope someone can help me.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I too experience these excrucitating pains under my rib cage, sometimes in my shoulder blades, my hips and sometimes in the back of my thighs. These pains are very real and extremely painful. The doctor prescribed quinine for the leg cramps but seems unable to understand exactly how much pain I am in. I am so afraid that the pains might come as they are so bad. I am now beginning to experience pains in my arms both above and below the elbows. I am sorry I have no answers for you but I wish someone would think about this condition very seriously as it can be quite frightening. Do let me know if you find any relief from anywhere and of course I wish you well and hope you can solve the mystery. These "fat cramps", as I used to call them, have been occurring for at least 8 years. However, they are occurring more frequently and with more severity.They are always in my torso area (that's why I have always referred to them as "fat cramps) and they always occur when I move in some way. I am unable to reproduce the occurrance at will, perhaps out of dread, but I can feel the muscles jumping and twitching in an extremely painful manner.I am unable to stop the spasm and the pain is so bad that I can hardly breathe or move to ease the pain.The spasms were always located somewhere along the muscles that cover my ribcage until just recently. Now they are extending to the abdominal muscles that leave the ribcage and go toward the inside of my hip bones.If anyone has any idea of what could be causing this, I would truly appreciate sharing in the knowledge.Thank you!
    40edwina 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi I am sorry I do not have any answers for you but I will say I understand just how painful these cramps can be. I too went to the doctors not just once and I received the same reply as you did "never heard of such a thing". However he did prescribe quinine tablets for cramps in the back of the thigh (unbelievable painful) and it does appear to have had some effect. However the pains in my ribs, hips and sometimes my shoulder blades appear now and again. However infrequent it is something I am very afraid of. I have now also experienced cramp in my arms both above and below the elbows. You would think that someone in this day and age would have knowledge on just what to do to gain peace. Please help! I have these symptoms too. Painful muscle cramps in my torso. I have been trying for years to find out what the condition is and what I can do about it. My doctor says she has never heard of such a thing and treated me with muscle relaxers. The muscle relaxers helped the symptoms at night, but made me drowsy, so I couldn't take them during the day. Calcium supplements seemed to help for awhile, as well. These spasms are extremely painful, seem to come on more frequently if I am over-tired. During the spasm I can barely breathe or speak, they are so intense. I, too have had the symptoms for a number of years, but as I grow older they are worse. Please help --- if you have any information.Thank you
    40edwina 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • I too had these severe muscle spasms. It took many many visits to the doctor..and his actually witnessing an episode...for him to finally diagnose me with Fibromyalgia. He started me on low-dose antidepressants and muscle relaxers. He also began giving me spinal adjustments as often as I felt I needed it...usually about once a month. D.O's (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) can do that. It's been working for me for the last 6 years. I still see a D.O. about every month or so for adjustments...to my spine and to my meds. I also see a massage therapist once a month. The combination of all these things help keep my muscles from becoming too tense. This will never go away, but it is manageable.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • All of you are experiencing, it sounds like, the very same issues I have had for the past couple years – and for me, they got progressively worse. Also I could make just about any muscle cramp just by flexing it; Toes, Calves, Shoulders, Back, etc. I am a 50 year old white male. I'm not one to complain and didn't ask my doctor about it until my last annual physical. Like your doctor’s, he was unable to make a conclusive diagnosis. He explained it could be hereditary (My father experienced these too), electrolyte imbalance, and other possible causes. However my doctor did prescribe a treatment. He had me go to WAL-MART and purchase a supplement combination of Zinc, Magnesium and Calcium, and a supplement of Potassium. I began taking these immediately and I’m happy to report that the severity and frequency of the cramps has diminished greatly. I still get them occasionally, but not near what it used to be. Because I work out some, and because I probably do not drink as much water as I should, it is hard to pinpoint that the supplements are what fix me. But I am better. Trying to research the subject on the internet proved fruitless until this site came across my radar. I will add it to my favorites and check back often over the next week or so. I’d love to hear your stories about this issue. If you decide to try the supplements, PLEASE PLEASE make sure you increase your water intake. It not only helps with the potential electrolyte cause of acute cramps but should reduce the potential for kidney stones from the increased calcium. Good Luck! I know firsthand how frustrating and painful this can be.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • August 12, 2008
    • 01:08 PM
    • 0
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  • I'm athlete, I work out and stay healthy and have always been healthy for most of my life. I've been anemic since I was 12, but after college, I havent had any real concerns with it at all. I am experiencing intense, sharp, muscle spasms above my right elbow in the back of my arm. So much, it's almost crippling. It makes my arm weak and unable to function for the few seconds it happens. The pain is now beginning in the same spot on my left are as well. The pain goes in an out throughout the day, but will only last 10-15 seconds each time... will go in an out for about 5 minutes... and then I'll be fine for hours... even the rest of the day.I tend to have intense back spasms on the right side, middle of my back as well. When I have those, it almost makes me faint and drop right where I'm at.I've been told by people that think they know what there talking about (friends and family) that I probably just have a vitamin deficiency and that I should incorporate more potassium?? One note... I have been a vegetarian my entire life, but have always had a very balanced healthy eating habits.Please help. I am 23 years old, a collegiate alumni athlete, and currently play soccer and softball 5 days a week.Help. Any advice would be amazing. Thanks soooo much!
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • August 22, 2008
    • 10:55 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • These "fat cramps", as I used to call them, have been occurring for at least 8 years. However, they are occurring more frequently and with more severity.They are always in my torso area (that's why I have always referred to them as "fat cramps) and they always occur when I move in some way. I am unable to reproduce the occurrance at will, perhaps out of dread, but I can feel the muscles jumping and twitching in an extremely painful manner.I am unable to stop the spasm and the pain is so bad that I can hardly breathe or move to ease the pain.The spasms were always located somewhere along the muscles that cover my ribcage until just recently. Now they are extending to the abdominal muscles that leave the ribcage and go toward the inside of my hip bones.If anyone has any idea of what could be causing this, I would truly appreciate sharing in the knowledge.Thank you!I also have this type cramps. I have found that putting a "mustard plaster" on the spots that are hurting I get relief. I am 73 years old and the mustard plaster has never failed me.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • August 30, 2008
    • 04:16 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I have had the torso pains for many years now. Running and situps brought them on. They stopped when I stopped running and doing sit-ups. Last year before the holidays, I had not worked out for months and then decided to run and do some situps on Christmas Eve. That night while I was driving home form the train station I made a sudden move forward and my whole torso cramped up. I had to pull over while I was driving it was so bad. Maybe I was dehydrated? Drinking alot of water isn't always the answer because your body needs to balance the water - electrolytes like potassium and magnesium have something to do with water balance in the body. I have taken supplements but the problem still prevails. Help!
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • September 11, 2008
    • 04:43 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
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  • I too had these and I started taking Omega 3 Fish Oil that I bought at the local drug store. After 1 week I no longer have these horrible cramps in my torso. Don't know what causes it, but I think I found the cure.
    GingerCollins 1 Replies
    • February 23, 2009
    • 08:34 PM
    • 0
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  • this feels like theres a fork poked into the mucle and someone is twisting it,gatoraide seems to help,potasium and calcuim help,stopping drinking beer and booze helps,limit coffee intake
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Have been having them since about 1994 on and off (usually when I overwork- which doesn't take much)- was then diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and was at first told it was that. Makes me swell up afterwards like I was pregnant. Now it's moved on to add thigh cramps from the groin to outer knee, every kind of leg and foot cramp imaginable, and even into my neck (sometimes all at once). Get b-12 shots, take fish oil, and even (yuuuck) drink Tonic (quinine) water along with my regular water. Only thing to quell them when they hit (always at night) is a blistering hot shower (takes about10 screaming minutes) Have now been told it has something to do with the nerves in my body- they're running tests. Anyone have any more info or ideas? I'm desperate and so are my daughter and son in law (I can't clear the tub when cramping, so have to use THEIR master bathroom walk-in shower- great at 3am)
    CherylS 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • I have had frequent severe muscle cramps in my torso for several years. They recently increased in frequency and severity as to be unbearable. Blood chemistry appeared normal including calcium levels. I recently requested that my Vitamin D levels checked and found they were extremely low. Best guess so far is that this is caused by heavy doses of statins and other cholesterol lowering drugs. These drugs reduce fat in the system and D is fat soluble. It need fat to process. Not sure if all this is correct, but as soon as I added 4000iu of Vitamin D3 each day, the pains all but disappeared. Forgetting to take the Vitamin D3 allows the pains to return immediately. It could be Omega 3 oils puts enough fat back into the system to process D properaly. I will try that. Non of this is expert advice, but a vitamin D test can't hurt ..and might help.Good luck!
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi, This is your Psoas Muscles. When this happens, do not clutch your abdomen the way you want to, stand up and stretch your arms high over your head. Go read my blog www.mystretchedbody.blogspot.com for more info.
    marybi 11 Replies Flag this Response
  • I also have been having severe torso cramps, sometimes starting under my arms and going into my shoulders and running along my diaphram. I'm hypothyridic; take fish oil; potassium because I take Lasix for edema (and the Lasix causes leg cramps if I don't take the potassium); have degenerative disk disease; and a B12 difficiency. I've had three knee surgeries, all the the right knee, and all have failed me (the last one was a full knee replacement). I've been misdiagnosed so many times by my local doctors that I don't trust one to figure this one out. I'm handicapped now so it is difficult for me to get out of town to see other doctors. I had to personally diagnose my gall stones (doctor was giving me painkillers and cortisone shots in my back for the pain when the problem was that I had 21 gall stones) and my ruptured disk (I was told I was too young to have ruptured a disk, being 33 and a woman). Local doctors also told my mom that her swollen lymph nodes were just an infection for a year even when she asked if it was cancer. It took a year before he referred her to a specialist who immediately diagnosed it as tongue/neck cancer. So--if any of you get a correct diagnosis that takes care of this problem, please post it! Thanks!
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I have gained alot of midsection weight in the last two years, following my hysterectomy, and quitting smoking at the same time...probably 30 extra pounds around the middle.Have never had this problem before, but now get it occasionally, and last night at work, after putting in some pretty heavy physical work (I work in Park Maintenance...weedwacking, push mowing, edging, moving soccer goals, etc.), I had the most severe bout EVER.....it started by my boss making me laugh so hard my ribcage seized like a Charlie Horse, then pt re-spasming for about 45 mins. I'd stretch it, few minutes later the pain would subside, I'd try to go back to work, it would re-seize.I thought about going to the ER, it was so bad. As some of you have said, painful to breathe..couldn't stand up straight...I hear you about the electrolytes, I am 53, overweight and do heavy work in Floida outdoors - I drink a lot of water during my work, but perhaps need to injest a Sugar-free electrolyte drink once or twice a shift....but I have high blood pressure, and many of them are sodium-loaded.My question - how old are most of you?Thanks,Di
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • September 25, 2009
    • 04:58 AM
    • 0
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  • Sorry to have received a "thumbs down", right on my first post, with no offer of help..Guess I inadvertently offended someone..sorry....but I am terrified that something is seriously wrong, so hope someone else will tell me if they've had anything similar, to help start me on a path to some answers! I am fearing heart disease, pancreatitis, liver disease, and I'm really truly scared, particularly since I have three teens to raise... I work hard, outdoors, in Florida, and am a single Mom.Thanks, Di
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • October 7, 2009
    • 05:29 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • These "fat cramps", as I used to call them, have been occurring for at least 8 years. However, they are occurring more frequently and with more severity.They are always in my torso area (that's why I have always referred to them as "fat cramps) and they always occur when I move in some way. I am unable to reproduce the occurrance at will, perhaps out of dread, but I can feel the muscles jumping and twitching in an extremely painful manner.I am unable to stop the spasm and the pain is so bad that I can hardly breathe or move to ease the pain.The spasms were always located somewhere along the muscles that cover my ribcage until just recently. Now they are extending to the abdominal muscles that leave the ribcage and go toward the inside of my hip bones.If anyone has any idea of what could be causing this, I would truly appreciate sharing in the knowledge.Thank you!Im a 15 year old girl who is seeking answers to these spasms. This is my first time with these, and I am in excruciating pain. My back, ribs and abdominals are really really REALLY sore. As I type this i am having minor spasms. They start in my head and travel down to my feet. It is so bad that It is making me want to vomit. I dont know how it happened but, I have got a severly infected ingrown toenail, a fever thats through the roof and an ear infection. Do you think that they may be the problem? Its unbearable, as i have trouble breathing. I am really scared for my wellbeing. Can anyone help me?
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • November 25, 2009
    • 04:34 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
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