The loss of essential vitamins and minerals in the human body causes several health issues. It leads to multiple diseases, as well. Carpopedal spasm is also one such health issue which is caused due to reduced ionized calcium and phosphate levels in the body. So, let us find out about Carpopedal spasm in greater detail.
What are Carpopedal Spasm?
Etymologically, carpopedal spasm means an involuntary muscular contraction.
Carpopedal spasm is a disease in which the hands and feet of a patient contract involuntarily. Their ankles and the wrists may also be afflicted in certain cases. It results in a tingling and cramping sensation for a short period. The cramps take place briefly but cause intense pain. It occurs when the level of ionized calcium and phosphate in the body goes down. Carpopedal spasm causes an abnormal sensation in the hands, feet and perioral region.
Symptoms of Carpopedal Spasm
Carpopedal spasm occurs due to an imbalance of certain nutrients in the body. It has well-defined symptoms. The symptoms are as follows:
- Uncontrolled muscular twitching
- Sudden change in the mental status
- Muscular weakness
- Involuntary spasm of hands, feet, wrists and ankles.
- Such spasms occur frequently
- The spasm is followed by extreme fatigue
- Dry and scaly skin
- Brittle bones
- No reasonable cause triggers the involuntary spasm.
- The movements are unnecessarily fast.
- It may result in seizure or palpitations, at an extreme level.
Causes of Carpopedal Spasm
Now, a popular proverb says, “Prevention is better than cure.” People need to know what triggers carpopedalspasm, to prevent it. The causes are as follows:
- It can occur in the third trimester of pregnancy
- Kidney disease
- Vitamin D deficiency
- Deficiency of certain electrolytes such as phosphorus and magnesium
- Hyperventilation, which is a common issue with a lack of carbon dioxide
- Calcium deficiency
- Difficulty in calcium absorption
- Injury of some peripheral nerves
- Intake of a few prescription drugs that might have triggered an allergy
- Seizures may also bring about sudden, carpopedal cramps.
Tetanus may also be a cause of carpopedal spasm. It is a bacteria that enters a wound and afflicts patients who have not taken any injection. It may lead to muscular cramps, involuntary twitching and even slight fever.
Treatment of Carpopedal Spasm
It is better to identify the root cause of carpopedal spasm before starting treatment. If calcium deficiency is the sole cause of the disease, consuming calcium-rich food or calcium supplements will suffice.
- Increase Calcium level: The patients should increase their calcium intake. Cheese, raw milk, chia seeds, orange juice, are classic examples of calcium-enriched food. Such food should be a part of the daily diet of patients facing carpopedal spasm.
- Increase Vitamin D level: People who undergo regular carpopedal spasms should include food rich in vitamin D as a part of their diet. Tuna, salmon, mushrooms, mackerel, fortified cereals and lean beef are rich in Vitamin D. Such food should be consumed regularly.
- Stretching muscles: Stretching the muscles at regular intervals, prevent them from expanding and contracting. Swimming and a variety of stretching exercises and aerobic workouts are classic moves which require people to stretch their muscles. However, people should not overstretch their muscles. It may aggravate the problem.
- Tetanus vaccine: The patients should check their childhood medical database to confirm whether they have taken a tetanus vaccine. They need to take a booster once in every decade.
- Stay hydrated:Dehydration results in muscular cramps. So, drinking water regularly is of vital importance. Most of the tissues and muscles in our body need water to stay hydrated.
- Restrict the consumption of alcohol and caffeine. : Alcohol and caffeine prevent the body from absorbing calcium. As a result, people who suffer from carpopedal spasm need to stay away from caffeine and alcohol.
- Avoid smoking: the nicotine present in cigarettes flushes out calcium and many essential nutrients present in the body. It may lead to carpopedal spasm. As a result,patients need to avoid smoking.
- Take necessary supplements: The patients should take calcium and phosphorus supplements., as prescribed by the physician.
Carpopedal Spasm Hyperventilation
When people hyperventilate, they breathe faster and deeper than usual. As a result, they end up releasing even the minimum quantity of carbon dioxide the blood requires. The calcium level of the body goes down as well.
Hence, hyperventilation leads to carpopedal spasm. Patients of hyperventilation need to take nutritional supplements regularly. Intake of Vitamin D and calcium supplements may regularise the blood flow.
Which feature(s) Indicates a Carpopedal Spasm in a client with hypoparathyroidism?
Hypoparathyroidism occurs when the parathyroid glands release too little parathyroid hormone. PTH maintains a balance of calcium and phosphorus in the human body. No vaccine is available for this disease. This rare disease is gradually becoming increasingly common. The patients had likely inherited it from their ancestors. The symptoms of hypoparathyroidism are as follows.
- Numbness of limbs
- Carpopedal spasm
- Neurocognitive dysfunction
- A tingling sensation of fingertips and around the mouth. It is also known as paresthesia.
- Hair loss in patches
- Fluctuating Heartbeat
- Muscle pain and cramps. These muscular cramps are known as tetany.
- Brittle toenails and fingernails
- Twitching of the muscles around mouth, arms and throat
- The deficiency of magnesium may impact the parathyroid glands.
- Menstruation is exceedingly painful. Tremendous muscular cramps cause incredible pain.
- The patient feels overcome by weakness and fatigue.
- A burning sensation in fingertips and lips
- Unusually dry and rough skin
- The blood flow to the arms is temporarily obstructed. This symptom is known as Trousseau’s sign of latent tetany.
- Bone pain
- A tap on the facial nerve may lead to tetany of the facial muscles. This symptom is known as Chvostek’s sign.
- Crippling headache
- A Drastic gain in weight
- Certain muscles in the feet swell up. It affects the nerves.
- The tingling sensation particularly affects the arch of the foot.
Hyperventilation also leads to cramps in hands and feet. Lack of calcium leads to sudden numbness and a tingling sensation around the mouth. The family of the patients need to consult a specialist immediately in such a situation. Otherwise, Carpopedal spasm may turn out to be fatal.