Twitching question?

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Active member
Sep 27, 2007
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I was wondering about the twitching associated with ALS. I have read that for some it was their first an only symptom, but I've also read that it's not until after the muscle atrophies that the twitching begins. My question is, is the twitching continuous (constant) if it's the first sign, or does it get better, then worse, etc. Thanks!

Also, is it generalized, all over the body?

There has been many disucssions about twitching and fastitulations (sp?) on this site. I put "twitching" in the "search" file at the top of this screen and got a number of posts. Try that and see if it helps answer your concerns. Take Care, Peg

You won't find a straight answer. There are PALS here where twithching started first focally or started first all over and some that had muscle wasting then twithcing or some that had weakness then wasting then twitches or twitches - weakness - wasting....

Nothing is the same for any person in ALS.



Can't offer you a answer for ALS -- just personal experience. I have PLS ( some experts don't think they should be seperate ) & have been twitching for over 2 years. In PLS the muscles, they say don't atrophy.

When the lower leg muscles twitch or have a burning sensation, it stops when my dog jumps on the bed & lays against that leg. That was comforting when all this first happened. Let it all stress me out a lot then. Marley wasn't allowed on the bed then either. He really had a concerned look when jumping up that first time & I'm glad the rule is past history now.

When I'm over stressed or sleep deprived the twitching occurs more often & for longer periods. Recently I started trying to meditate since brain waves during meditation are similar to rem sleep waves. (I get very little sleep.) When doing this every day for a week at least, I twitch less & sleep more.
Benefits not expected but noticed. These diseases seem to be different w/ each patient so here's hoping something here helps.

best to you,
Lexington, Ky.
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Here are my answers that I got from my 2 neuros after EMG:

1) ALS twitches never start on the whole body. If so, then there were unoticable twitches before - thats the main difference. The people who think they had wide-spread twitches at the one time, those people didnt notice slight twitches before. Its due to the pathology of the disease, it canf affect the whole neuromuscular system at once, its progressive
One exception: Suspicious are rare twitches (a few per hour) in absolutely different places. Bening twitches have mostly "hotspots" and are more frequent.

2) ALS twitches are often slighter, less noticable than benign ones. However, this isnt reliable

3) ALS twitches never come and go. If the muscle starts to dying, it twitches. When the twitching stops, the muscle is dead/inactive. Twitching can change its intensity, but never disappear fully.

4) ALS twitches can be recruit by tapping on the muscle/stretching it. Bening ones too, but only rarely and only first time the muscle is stretched.

5) Twitching CAN be earlier than weakness/atrophy, because its the moment when the muscle is affected. The weakness must follow in a 1-4 weeks or its present.

I dont say these have to be valid for all, as the neuros said: these facts are same for all, but some people didnt notice slight twitches, some of them didnt notice weakness in muscles they dont use much and so on..this lead to many variations.

I got the same type of answers that you have stated also-- There are so mony different variations to what on reads I am very sceptical of any doctors conclusions and suggestions. I can say my twitching continues and am scheduled for another EMG this friday on the right side of my body that is going crazy with twitching now-- So if all the criteria you have stated holds true-- and all the things I have been told previously is correct-- Then maybe I need not be concerned at all. Unfortunately-- I do not have any kind of answer what it is happening-- and that is the most frustrating thing.

Lets keep our fingers crossed-- and toes also ( as long as they don't cramp)

I wouldn't worry about twitching with no other symptoms, particularly not generalized twitching.
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