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Widespread muscle aches
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Widespread muscle aches

For the past few months I have been having muscle aches daily in various parts of my body (arms, back of legs, lower back). The muscle aches have a feeling like when you have'nt exercised for a while, and you just start back at the gym. I also get on and off flu like symptoms occasionally. The problem is I have not worked out - A few times a week I also have been feeling a need to stretch my legs while laying in bed at night. It is like a discomfort almost like restless legs, I just want to stretch them (it is a weird feeling inside). I have had various blood tests done (they even checked for rhemtoid arthritis) and everything came back fine, except my sed rate which was at 67. They said there is either and infection or inflammation in the body and under the CSC the RDW came back at 16.4. Doc said this is something about cell measurement??? Well, what do you think this could possibly be ? My doc did not seem worried about the sed rate cause everything else was okay. He said they would repeat it in 3 mos - well I do not want to continue with these symptoms for three months. What else should I have them test for?
Does this sound like Lyme disease to you? I do live in a wood type area and have a dog. Please give me your thoughts. I miss feeling 100%.

PS - I have to take a muscle ache type Tylenol or Ibuprofen just to function or I feel like I cannot get anything done. Once I take the Tylentol or Inuprofen I feel a little better.
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An elevated sedimentation rate suggest inflammation occurring within the body.  This can be due to either an infection or rheumatological disease.  

One option would be polymyalgia rheumatica, which can present with muscle pain and an elevated sed rate.  A course of steroids would be both diagnostic and treat the disease - and the response should be rapid if this is the correct diagnosis.  

An elevated RDW can be present in various types of anemia - like B12 deficiency or iron deficiency.  These options should be evaluated.  

This is an uncommon presentation for lyme disease.  If this is suspected, blood tests can be done to confirm the diagnosis.

I would consider a rheumatology evaluation if the symptoms continue.  Further testing, including creatinine kinase and aldolase levels, can be considered.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
kevinmd_
4 Comments
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Forgot to mention my age - 44 yr old female.
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Is Polmyalgia Rhem. inflammation of the muscles? I want to add that I do have a history of Ulcerative Colitis (17+ yrs). I would say it is moderate. I do have anemia and an iron deficiency so you hit the nail on the head with the elevated RDW. I also have angular chelitis due to the vitiamin def. My colitis actually has been in remission for several months now with no meds.... at which time the muscle aches started. Could the inflammation travel from the colon to the muscle, and that is why I have had no colitis problems for months?
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My RDW was elevated as well and my doctor forgot to mention what it is. I've searched the web but am not getting anywhere thus far. Can you explain?
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A related discussion, Severe muscle and joint pains and iron deficiency. was started.
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A related discussion, muscle aches was started.
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