Make an appointment with your doctor if you have muscle cramps that are severe, frequent and not getting better with self-care. When you see your doctor, bring a list of your key medical information, including any allergies or medical conditions, and the names of all the medications, vitamins and supplements you're taking.
Your doctor is likely to ask a number of questions to help determine if you should have any tests or see a specialist. To make the most of your appointment, consider in advance your answers to the following:
Feb. 19, 2013
- When did you first develop cramps?
- How frequent and severe are your cramps?
- Does anything typically precede your cramps, such as mild to strenuous exercise?
- Do you ever develop cramps while you're resting?
- Does stretching relieve your cramps?
- Do you have any other symptoms, including muscle weakness, pain, or the sensation that a foot, hand or limb has fallen asleep?
- Do any of your close blood relatives have a history of muscle cramps?
- Have you noticed any changes in your urine after exercise?
- Do you use any recreational or sports-enhancement drugs?
- Muscle cramp. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00200. Accessed Dec. 19, 2012.
- Daroff RB, et al. Bradley's Neurology in Clinical Practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4377-0434-1..C2009-0-40427-6--TOP&isbn=978-1-4377-0434-1&uniqId=364938937-2. Accessed Dec. 19, 2012.
- Winkelman JW. Nocturnal leg cramps. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Dec. 19, 2012.
- Katzberg HD, et al. Assessment: Symptomatic treatment for muscle cramps (an evidence-based review). Neurology. 2010;74:691.
- Laskowski ER (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Dec. 21, 2012.