429700 tn?1308007823


If you have spasticity, where does it occur?  Have you noticed anything that makes it worse?  I am also curious if anyone ever gets neck spasticity . . .  Is it possible to have it so severe that it causes bulging discs?

With the cooler weather, I tend to have more pain in my legs.  When I'm overheated, I get the same problem.  Is this what you notice, and is it spasticity?  

I have pain in stiffness in my neck.  I remember years ago when this pain started.  At one point my neck was so stiff that I couldn't move my head.  Fast forward many years later, and I was diagnosed with MS because of lesions in my brain, but along with the lesion finding the MRI showed bulging discs in my cevical spine.  Can this be caused by spasticity?

I also feel pain and tightness in my fingers (especially on the right--and I'm right handed).  Not in the joints so much, but the entire hand.  I can no lnger make a fist and playing the piano is getting difficult.  Even typing is a little harder. My fingers are starting to look somewhat deformed. Do you think that this is spasticity?

I'm just looking to find out about other people's spasticity is like . . .  Is it possible to have spasticity that causes physical attributes like the ones I've said show up?  I am so confused about this issue.  I have a complicated medical background (low-titer ANA, fibro diagnosis that my neuro refutes, hypothyroidism), but I do have a definitive MS diagnosis.


Best Answer
572651 tn?1530999357
just when I thnk I have the concept down, I have to requestion myself.  The usual examples of spasticity involve the limbs, but I believe it can also affect other muscles.  Spasticity is the tightness.  Spasms are sudden movements or tightness.  It's easy to see how the concepts get intermingled and then we all get confused.  

From http://www.nationalmssociety.org/about-multiple-sclerosis/what-we-know-about-ms/symptoms/spasticity/index.aspx

"Spasticity refers to feelings of stiffness and a wide range of involuntary muscle spasms (sustained muscle contractions or sudden movements). It is one of the more common symptoms of MS. Spasticity may be as mild as the feeling of tightness of muscles or may be so severe as to produce painful, uncontrollable spasms of extremities, usually of the legs. Spasticity may also produce feelings of pain or tightness in and around joints, and can cause low back pain. Although spasticity can occur in any limb, it is much more common in the legs.

There are two types of severe MS-related spasticity:
In flexor spasticity, mostly involving the hamstrings (muscles on the back of the upper leg), and hip flexors (muscles at the top of the upper thigh), the hips and knees are bent and difficult to straighten.
In extensor spasticity, involving the quadriceps and adductors (muscles on the front and inside of the upper leg), the hips and knees remain straight with the legs very close together or crossed over at the ankles.
Spasticity may be aggravated by sudden movements or position changes, extremes of temperature, humidity, or infections, and can even be triggered by tight clothing"

Many individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS) suffer from muscle stiffness and/or painful muscle cramps. Sometimes, there will be sudden, uncontrolled movements of the limbs. This is called "spasticity" or "spasms."

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1453990 tn?1329231426
I have spasticity in my feet and calves.  Lately I have also had it in my abs.  I have found out that it helps to have a little bit of spasticity during the day.  If I take Flexeril or an anti-spasmodic during the day, I find if very difficult to get out of a "deep" sofa or get up from kneeling or sitting on the floor.  Given the issues I have with feet and toes, I see know reason why you couldn't have spasticity in hands and finger.  The flexor and extensors in the hands a pretty close to what's in the feet.

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Avatar universal
Deb, I get neck stiffness all the time.. I also have bulging discs in the c5 and 6.
I also have hip pain (still not sure if it is considered spasticiy)
I have pain in my left hip and when I am curled up on my couch and leaning on my hip, I have to constantly reposition myself because of the burning pain.
When I am walking, my hip stiffens up. This makes me walk with  a limp because it hurts to bring my leg forward.
I am glad this topic keeps popping up, I have been feeling so much of it lately, I need to learn as much as I can.
Thanks Pam
Helpful - 0
572651 tn?1530999357
Spasticity can occur anywhere that you have muscles from what I understand - Shadowsister (not sure if you know her) has spasticity/spasms in the bladder of all places.  And she also had such horrific spinal spasms caused by spasticity that she has broken her spine.  Her case is definitely extreme, but another good example that this disease can affect just about any part of our body.

Helpful - 0
1207048 tn?1282174304
I'm still very confused on spasticity. I'm pretty sure I have it, but my neuro has always focused on my other issues during appointments. I have 3 spots that give me trouble: behind my right knee, my left outer thigh, and my right shoulder & neck. The knee one is just sore, and when I have it I don't want to bend or straighten my leg completely. The thigh one feels like a sore muscle. The shoulder/ neck one is the worst. It starts by feeling like I slept wrong, and just a sore muscle. Over the course of a few days the muscles get tighter and tighter feeling like a continuous charlie horse. It gets to the point where I can't turn my head in any direction without pain. Then, over a matter of days it will ease up again.

I hope you can get some answers from your neuro!
Helpful - 0
987762 tn?1331027953
I cant actually say (for sure) i've got spasticity, but i do get a lot of muscle spasms and often the intercostal muscles after a while of spasming decide they've had enough of doing a jig and refuse to move. Thats when it feels like i've broken myself, my rib cage just doesnt flex when i move around, i think thats why i ended up cracking. When its really playing up, i emit a loud cracking sound (like a snapped tree branch) from my sternum, it scares the begeebers out of people. Oh and it hurts!

Helpful - 0
1070610 tn?1279274410
I have spasticity in both quads, my right top of my arm and shoulder , my left top of arm, shoulder and neck , lower back and the bottom.  It restricts movement, feels stiff and causes me pain. Worse in the cold of if I get tired.
I find a heat pack helps with the pain if it is bad. Stretching each day, sometimes 3x a day helps as well.  I even have to stretch my neck. I can't turn my head all the way to the left now. My left leg can no longer rotate fully.

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Avatar universal
All of the areas you have spasticity are th exact same places I get mine. I also get in in my right thigh and( left hip?? )  My neck and shoulder blade are the absolute worst. It starts outta nowhere and keeps me in the same position for hours. HORRIBLE PAIN! I have a 7 yr. old and 4 yr. old and you can just imagine what its like to tell them please dont do anything just be good, mommy can't move, as the tears are rolling down my face.
My 7 yr. old gets the heat pad and my medication with some water. My daughter gets the pillows and props me up, (If I could move) at the table, of course both times this happened severely I was in the kithcen
My pain can last from couple of hours to a whole day or even 2 days, and then stops suddenly when it feels like (I have tortured her enough).
I even had stiffness in my neck that lasted for a month.

Helpful - 0
1221035 tn?1301000508
URL of this page: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003297.htm

Spasticity is stiff or rigid muscles with exaggerated, deep tendon reflexes (for example, a knee-jerk reflex). The condition can interfere with walking, movement, or speech.

Spasticity generally results from damage to the part of the brain that controls voluntary movement. It may also occur when you have damage to the nerves traveling from brain down to spinal cord.

Symptoms of spasticity include:

Exaggerated deep tendon reflexes (the knee-jerk or other reflexes)
Scissoring (crossing of the legs as the tips of scissors would close)
Repetitive jerky motions (clonus), especially when touched or moved
Unusual posturing
Carrying the shoulder, arm, wrist, and finger at an abnormal angle due to tightness of the muscle
Spasticity may also interfere with speech. Severe, long-term spasticity may lead to contracture of muscles, causing joints to be bent at a fixed position.

I too have it in my neck, shoulders, hips, and lower legs....lately, as I am walking, my right calf muscle will just tighten up like a baseball in my leg...it feels really weird.

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Avatar universal
This is really great info.!! Spasticity is the name of the game these days.

Deb,  Thanks for the post!! LOL I definately found this useful.

Pamela :)
Helpful - 0
429700 tn?1308007823
Thanks everyone!  I've learned a lot.  
Helpful - 0
8008265 tn?1396468674
I thought I was having spacticity issues, but after 15 plus years with MS and seeing over a dozen doctors, I was finally diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis as well.

Sanctity deals with muscles, not joints. So if you are dealing with severe joint pain, get tested for RA. Don't let it take years to find out.

Helpful - 0
751951 tn?1406632863
I have been experiencing severe pain in the right side of the neck.  The PT gave me some stretching exercises to do, but if I don't do them HOURLY, I tighten up again.  I have stenosis, retrolisthesis, and I can't remember what else in my spine (Thank you, MRI, for finally showing them SOMETHING concrete!).  I think my neck muscles simply get tired of trying to hold the vertebrae in positions that don't hurt.  When I turn certain ways, the joints go "Snap!  Crackle!  Pop!," only much louder than in my cereal bowl.  More like a "Ka-Pow!"  
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