The most common causes of muscle pain are tension, stress, overuse and minor injuries. This type of pain is usually limited to just a few muscles or a small part of your body.

Muscle pain that is felt throughout your whole body is most often caused by an infection, such as the flu. Other causes include more-serious conditions, such as some diseases or health conditions that affect the muscles. Muscle pain also may be a side effect of certain medicines.

Common causes of muscle pain include:

  1. Chronic exertional compartment syndrome
  2. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS)
  3. Claudication
  4. Dermatomyositis
  5. Dystonia
  6. Fibromyalgia
  7. Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)
  8. Influenza (flu) and other viral illness (influenza-like illness)
  9. Low levels of certain vitamins, such as vitamin D
  10. Lupus
  11. Lyme disease
  12. Medications, especially the cholesterol medications known as statins
  13. Muscle cramp
  14. Muscle strains
  15. Myofascial pain syndrome
  16. Polymyalgia rheumatica
  17. Polymyositis (inflammatory disease that causes muscle weakness)
  18. Rheumatoid arthritis
  19. Sprains
  20. Too much or too little of electrolytes, such as calcium or potassium

Causes shown here are commonly associated with this symptom. Work with your doctor or other health care professional for an accurate diagnosis.

From Mayo Clinic to your inbox

Sign up for free and stay up to date on research advancements, health tips, current health topics, and expertise on managing health. Click here for an email preview.

To provide you with the most relevant and helpful information, and understand which information is beneficial, we may combine your email and website usage information with other information we have about you. If you are a Mayo Clinic patient, this could include protected health information. If we combine this information with your protected health information, we will treat all of that information as protected health information and will only use or disclose that information as set forth in our notice of privacy practices. You may opt-out of email communications at any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link in the e-mail.

April 27, 2023

See also

  1. Addison's disease
  2. Adjuvant therapy for cancer
  3. Adrenal fatigue: What causes it?
  4. Adult Still disease
  5. Are leg cramps disturbing your sleep?
  6. Atypical cells: Are they cancer?
  7. Back pain
  8. Infographic: Back Pain
  9. Back surgery: When is it a good idea?
  10. Banish back pain
  11. Biopsy procedures
  12. Bird flu (avian influenza)
  13. Brucellosis
  14. Cancer
  15. Cancer
  16. Cancer blood tests
  17. Myths about cancer causes
  18. Infographic: Cancer Clinical Trials Offer Many Benefits
  19. Cancer diagnosis: 11 tips for coping
  20. Cancer-related fatigue
  21. Cancer pain: Relief is possible
  22. Cancer risk: What the numbers mean
  23. Cancer surgery
  24. Cancer survival rate
  25. Cancer survivors: Care for your body after treatment
  26. Cancer survivors: Late effects of cancer treatment
  27. Cancer survivors: Managing your emotions after cancer treatment
  28. Cancer treatment myths
  29. Celiac disease
  30. Chemotherapy side effects: A cause of heart disease?
  31. Claudication
  32. Coconut oil: Can it cure hypothyroidism?
  33. Cold and flu viruses: How long can they live outside the body?
  34. Cold sore
  35. Anxiety and diet
  36. Curcumin: Can it slow cancer growth?
  37. Dengue fever
  38. Dermatomyositis
  39. Cancer-related diarrhea
  40. Drinking after hepatitis C cure: Is it safe?
  41. Early HIV symptoms: What are they?
  42. Ease the pain of leg cramps
  43. Eating during cancer treatment: Tips to make food tastier
  44. Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
  45. Ehrlichiosis and anaplasmosis
  46. Encephalitis
  47. Endocarditis
  48. Flu shots
  49. Flu: When to see a doctor?
  50. Gastroenteritis: First aid
  51. Generalized anxiety disorder
  52. Genital herpes
  53. Genital herpes: Can you get it from a toilet seat?
  54. Hangovers
  55. Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome
  56. Have cold sores? Keep them to yourself
  57. Heart cancer: Is there such a thing?
  58. Hemophilia
  59. Hepatitis A
  60. Hepatitis C
  61. Hepatitis C: How common is sexual transmission?
  62. Hepatitis C: What happens in end-stage liver disease?
  63. Herbal treatment for anxiety: Is it effective?
  64. Herniated disk FAQs
  65. High-dose flu vaccines: How are they different from other flu vaccines?
  66. High-dose vitamin C: Can it kill cancer cells?
  67. Histoplasmosis
  68. HIV/AIDS
  69. Hypercalcemia
  70. Hypoparathyroidism
  71. Hypothyroidism: Can calcium supplements interfere with treatment?
  72. Hypothyroidism diet
  73. Hypothyroidism and joint pain?
  74. Hypothyroidism: Should I take iodine supplements?
  75. Hypothyroidism symptoms: Can hypothyroidism cause eye problems?
  76. Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)
  77. Influenza (flu)
  78. Jet lag disorder
  79. Legionnaires' disease
  80. Listeria infection
  81. Low blood counts
  82. Mayo Clinic Minute: Signs and symptoms of syphilis
  83. Mixed connective tissue disease
  84. Monoclonal antibody drugs
  85. Mort Crim and Cancer
  86. Mouth sores caused by cancer treatment: How to cope
  87. Muscle cramp
  88. Muscle strains
  89. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS)
  90. Myofascial pain syndrome
  91. Myofascial release therapy: Can it relieve back pain?
  92. New Hep C Treatment
  93. No appetite? How to get nutrition during cancer treatment
  94. Peripheral artery disease (PAD)
  95. Plague
  96. Pneumonia
  97. Polio
  98. Polymyositis
  99. Porphyria
  100. Post COVID syndrome
  101. Post-polio syndrome
  102. Premenstrual dysphoric disorder
  103. Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
  104. Pulmonary fibrosis
  105. Salmonella infection
  106. Salt craving: A symptom of Addison's disease?
  107. Self-Image During Cancer
  108. Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)
  109. Sleeping positions that reduce back pain
  110. Causes of back pain
  111. Radiation simulation
  112. Small cell, large cell cancer: What this means
  113. Soy: Does it worsen hypothyroidism?
  114. Staph infections
  115. Still's Disease
  116. Syphilis
  117. Tailbone pain
  118. Takayasu's arteritis
  119. Test anxiety: Can it be treated?
  120. Integrative approaches to treating pain
  121. Nutrition and pain
  122. Pain rehabilitation
  123. Self-care approaches to treating pain
  124. Toxic shock syndrome
  125. Trichinosis
  126. Tumor vs. cyst: What's the difference?
  127. Vasculitis
  128. Video: 3 things you didn't know about cold sores
  129. How cancer spreads
  130. PICC line placement
  131. Viral hemorrhagic fevers
  132. Walking pneumonia
  133. Want to avoid cold sores? Use sunblock
  134. What is MERS-CoV?
  135. When cancer returns: How to cope with cancer recurrence
  136. Why isn't there a hepatitis C vaccine?