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Avatar universal

Diabetes and cramps?

I am a Type 1 diabetic who has recently been suffering from leg, foot, toe, ankle, thigh, and even hand cramps so bad that I can hardly stand it.  I get the foot and leg and ankle cramps usually in the middle of the night, and then can't sleep.  It is almost a nightly occurance.  My ankle sort of keeps cramping up, and then it spreads to my toes and calf.  It is absolutely unbearable.  I am wondering if ANYONE can tell me where to start to find out what is causing this.  I have asked my primary doc, endocrinologist, and kidney doctor, and they don't seem to be concerned or know what to do to help me.  They have ordered blood work, but it always comes up ok.  I take vitamin supplements ( Calcium, Magnesium, B12, Potassium,), and drink 2 glasses of V-8 everyday. ( A newspaper said that this could help).  I also put soap in my bed.  I do know that when I get dehydrated they are worse, and try to drink enough water.  Could the dehydration be all it is, or do I need to see if neuropathy or kidney disease is causing it.  I take an Ace Inhibitor for my kidney disease, related to my diabetes.  I don't know what to do, and though I am almost afraid to find out what is actually causing them, I need help.  I can't stand it anymore.  I almost called 911 tonight - the pain was so bad!  It is now 5:30, and I have been up since 1:30 fighting these horrible cramps.  Please help - what do I do?

This discussion is related to Severe Muscle Cramping.
4 Responses
Avatar universal
Just my two cents...

I stop eating bananas and that helped me out. I wonder if my potassium level was too high!
Avatar universal
I am having the same problems. I've had Type 1 since 28, and I'm now 45. I will be in the bed and usually the front of my ankle will cramp up. Within seconds every muscle in both legs from the knee down will lock up. The only way to get them out is to stand up and walk around, which is very painful and difficult. I have actually fell twice doing this. Once spraining both wrist and once busting my head and ribs during the fall. Nothing seems to trigger them. My blood sugars are usually normal. A few times they have been worse after a hard day working outside and losing a lot of fluid but most of the time they are unrelated to exercise or fluid loss. My doctors don't seem to understand or care. I would try anything to get some relief.
Avatar universal
I have been IDD over 50 years. A few years ago I began having these severe cramps described above, beginning in front of ankle and rapidly moving down top, mostly, of foot into toes. I have no explanation for the cause, except it seems to occur when my blood sugar is moving rapidly, either up or down - maybe both if I am simoogying (sp?). I do all of these so don't know which really is helping:
1. salt
2. tonic water (you can't buy quinine anymore but it is in tonic water)
3. hot water soaks
4. walking (if you can without falling or passing out from the pain)
5.deep breathing and conscience relaxation (this one is the hardest)
I've thought about going to pain management. Maybe I could learn some more copping tools! But I agree, an explanation would be real nice!
Avatar universal
i too suffer with these exact symptoms.  Being "complicated" like  you; the doctors blow me off once i do not fit into anything that is traditionally in their field.  Man have I been sent from place to place too.

Here is what i notice:  
    1. I am continually dehydrated (Sodium Level below 130 even with salt tablets)
    2.  I only get these severe cramps on days i take insulin.
    3. It is usually associated with severe drops in blood glucose levels (ie: tonight my meter read extremely high glucose over 600.  so i took insulin at 11:00pm Central time.  I was awakened  by these severe cramps and my sugar level was (304).  The
   4.  I am extremely insulin resistent.  Were most people react to changes as little as two units of insulin, i require 20 to get a move in bs levels..
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