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Lower leg cramps and L3-4 stenosis

BillOregonBBillOregon Posts: 22
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:59 AM in Spinal Stenosis
On top of the other symptoms of spondylolisthesis with stenosis at this joint, I am finding myself having cramps of the lower outer shin and ankle, especially when sleeping on my back with leg straight and feet stretched or pointed. Is this a likely complication of the stenosis? I have never this kind of cramping until recently.
I'm awaiting a surgical consultation this week, thank gosh.


  • Hello Bill,

    I had excruciating leg cramps when I'd get into bed at night, and like you, it was when my leg was stretched out. I have advanced spinal stenosis,with horrible sciatica pain and my doctor had started me slowly on Lyrica, and the cramps went away when I was at 250mg a day. I'm now at 300mg a day and haven't had a cramp yet. I also made a soft "roll" with some quilt batting and a towel, wrappped up in a pillowcase and I put it directly under the thighs, just below the buttocks. Maybe that would help? One thing I can tell you, I have NEVER had such PAIN in my whole life, including childbirth. The Lyrica seems to have taken care of that pain at least.

    Good luck.

  • I, too, have stenosis and had terrible leg cramps. I'm not sure if you are on any medications for stomach protection, but when I was on Cimetidine (don't know the other names for it), they were at their worst. After some reading online, I found out that is a very common side effect, so changed to a different medication and they stopped.

    A couple of years later they started up again when a vengeance. I haven't had them for a while in bed; I make sure I'm well hydrated during the day, and I do lots of 'flexing' of my feet. The ankle spasms can hit me when I'm putting on shoes or boots, as can spasms in the arches of my feet.

    You might want to try a magnesium/malic acid combination which can definitely make a difference if you stick with it.

    Take care, and hope you get some relief. I've had two consults about my stenosis; one doc said to do it now, but the other said to wait until it's worse and really affects my walking, so that's what I've chosen to do.

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