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Muscle Cramps in Chronic Kidney Failure(CRF)

2012-10-02 15:45

What are the causes of muscle cramps in chronic kidney failure? As is explained by expert doctors, the main reason for muscle cramps in chronic kidney failure is hypocalcemia, or low blood calcium. In the following we will introduce the detailed causes and preventive measures for muscle cramps.

An important cause of low calcium is insufficient intake of vitamin D. The patients with chronic kidney failure are often told to balance their diet carefully. When insufficient vitamin D is consumed from the diet, the patients are likely to reduce their blood calcium and experience muscle cramp.

Reduced production of vitamin D3 is another inducing cause. Vitamin D3 will promote absorption of calcium by gastrointestinal tract. In chronic kidney failure the production of vitamin D3 is decreased, thus reducing absorption of calcium and resulting in blood calcium.

When the kidneys are not functioning well, phosphorus will build up in bloodstream. When blood phosphorus gets lowered, blood calcium will become lower. Low calcium can irritate nerve muscle. Moderate reduction of calcium will cause moderate numbness and pinning sensations on limbs and face; in severer cases, the patients experience muscle cramps.

There are also exceptions. With combined acidosis, even if blood calcium is lowered, as PH level is low and there is a greater ratio of osteocalcin, the patients will not experience muscle cramps. After acidosis is corrected, the patients will begin to experience muscle cramps or even shortness of breath. So supplement of calcium is important at the meantime as treating acidosis.

Prevention and treatment of muscle cramps

Treat the symptom. Bone malnutrition and bone fracture are likely to occur after long-course of renal dysfunction. Supplementing oral calcium pills is beneficial, and at the meantime, keep warmth of your limbs. Cold limbs easily induce muscle cramps. Warming the limbs with hot water will help to relieve the cramps.

Treat the kidneys. The symptom results from diseased kidneys. To control the symptom, it is essential to protect the kidneys, stop worsening of the kidneys, manage high blood pressure and improve the internal imbalances. Only if kidneys can be improved will the symptom be remitted gradually.

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