Worried about symptoms

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Blair71

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Dec 25, 2023
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Learn about ALS
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US
State
TN
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Nashville
Good evening. I’ve been trying to talk myself out of worry, especially considering it’s the holiday. However, here’s what I’m dealing with.

Quick history: I have health anxiety and have had it for decades. I’ve also been recently diagnosed with breast cancer and had a double mastectomy one month ago. Waiting on pathology (which turned out to be good news) was incredibly stressful, as was the surgery.

Two weeks ago: I noticed twitching in my legs, nearly constant, when lying down. I’m not sure I can see the twitches or not (there’s the worry that these could be fibrillations and not fasciculations). They feel very mild, like small electrical pulses. They move about both legs. Occasionally I also get a feeling like a muscle is going to cramp. I don’t have a long history of Charlie horses but have had two this year that are memorable, that woke me out of sleep. I’ve also had a few other twitches recently in my arm and torso.

The leg thing is every morning when I awaken and most night while I’m trying to fall asleep. If I’m up and about or out doing something I don’t notice them happening. I do notice sometimes walking around that I have a calf muscle that might be tightening enough to cramp. I went to my PCP who said they don’t normally treat unless other symptoms present.

She did run my labs and my vitamin D is insufficient so I started about a week ago on more vitamin D. I’ve also been trying to drink more electrolyte water. But each day the twitches continue is another day of dread and worry that this is ALS.

Thank you for your thoughts.
 
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I see no reason to worry about ALS. I would ask for an at-home sleep study to be screened for RLS or another movement disorder. Your PCP can order it. It's very easy to do these days, with a single finger sensor. You can also video your own sleep or try your own wearable.

Depending on how low your D is/was, it may be a while before that is no longer a factor. But it begs the question of why it's low. Get what sun you can, check your diet, etc. I'm assuming calcium, PTH, phosphorus, Mg, sodium etc. were run. Imbalances can definitely cause twitches. You do not need to classify them.

Recovering from a major and painful surgery can take its toll on sleep, too. And pre-existing anxiety doesn't help. So in addition to the above, I'd give yourself some time to regroup and get some more/better counseling if you need it, though I would stay away from sedating drugs that can create their own sleep problems. Often, the best way to improve your sleep is to be your own detective and figure out your sweet spots, from when bedtime is to music or a low voltage heated mattress pad or whatever helps.

Glad to hear the path report was good. Again, I'd stop worrying about ALS and imagine a friend came to you with this. You'd say, what makes you feel better/feel worse? Same applies here.
 
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