Muscles problems may range from minor problems such as muscle fatigue to more painful injury-induced sprains, cramps, and pulled upper back muscles. Sometimes, when injury is not the cause, muscle disorders may be side-effects of medicine and even genetic disorders and diseases. These conditions can be chronic and serious, leading to muscle contractures, which cause muscles to lose their strength and control, muscle atrophy (the wasting-away of muscles), and involuntary muscle movement.
Muscle problems are associated with pain, a decline in the ability to move, and loss of control. Severe muscle problems may affect our daily functions by restricting movement and not allowing us to control our actions. These problems are most common in voluntary muscles, which are muscles of the skeletal system that enable us to move our body.
This week’s news update focuses on different muscle problems—their causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment.
Involuntary muscle movements are often thought of as a twitch or spasm that occurs briefly but resolves on its own. However, there are many conditions where uncontrollable body movements become a persistent feature of everyday life and can affect almost any part of the body, including the neck, face, and limbs.
This article will go over various involuntary muscle movement disorders describing how they lead to the involuntary movement of muscles and the effect disorders have on a person’s life.
What causes involuntary muscle movements
The muscles in the body function through a connection to your brain and spinal cord. When the brain fires signal for a particular muscle to contract and perform a function, it travels down a series of levels beginning at the motor cortex of the brain and terminating at the site of muscle innervation. If a problem occurs at any point along this chain, movement disorders can result. Continue reading…
Muscle contractures can be described as a loss of strength and muscle control. They can occur after an especially strenuous exercise and result in the inability to stretch out or use the affected muscle group. This phenomenon is often described as the muscle feeling “tight” or “cramped.” It is usually a temporary deformity that reduces joint flexibility and range of motion.
What are contractures?
Muscle contractures are generally considered a good thing and are required for us to be able to use virtually every part of our body. Muscle fibers contract by producing changes in muscle length, essentially by shorting the distance between actin and myosin filaments.
States of prolonged shortening or tightened tissues are referred to as a contracture. Here, muscles may stay contracted despite all effects. Contractures can affect skin, muscles, joint area, tendons, and ligaments, preventing normal movement.
What causes muscle contractures?
Muscle contractures can occur for several reasons, such as paralysis (loss of muscle function), muscular atrophy (decrease in muscle mass), and due to various forms of muscular dystrophy (muscles diseases). Essentially, these conditions will affect the muscle’s ability to form its basic function. The following are some examples of muscle contracture causes: Continue reading…
Muscle fatigue is something that we can all experience and while it may be a minor nuisance in many cases, there are situations where a person has difficulty recovering from muscle exhaustion, thus requiring medical attention. Knowing the causes, signs, and symptoms of muscle fatigue can be helpful in determining treatment methods and whether you need to see a doctor.
Physical exertion is good for us, but sometimes we can push it too far and as a result we experience muscle fatigue. What is muscle fatigue? It is generally defined as a decreased ability to perform muscle actions. If you have muscle fatigue, you will likely have a hard time getting a specific muscle to continue working, even if you attempt to change the type of activity you are trying to engage in.
What are the causes and symptoms of muscle fatigue?
As far as what causes muscle fatigue, there are a number of physical, environmental, biochemical, and nutritional factors involved. Some physiology experts suggest that a failure of the nervous system to communicate with muscle tissue or issues with metabolic processes are causes of muscle fatigue.
Here’s a more specific look at what we know about muscle fatigue causes: Continue reading…
Suffering from a pulled upper back muscle can be an agonizing experience. These types of back injuries often occur due to a sudden or unexpected movement of the upper body, especially when lifting heavy weights without stretching.
Medical professionals and health care experts believe that pulled upper back muscles occur due to the gradual tightening of muscles as a result of overuse. This can lead to persistent muscle spasms that can compromise blood circulation and cause eventual muscle weakness.
In this article, we will discuss how to treat a pulled upper back muscle as well as what the most common causes for its development are.
Strained or pulled upper back muscles can happen because of:
- Improper posture
- Overuse of the back muscles
- Bad conditioning
- Not warming up enough before beginning strenuous exercise
- Sudden loss of motor control leading to strain, possibly due to muscle fatigue
- Heavyweight lifting
- Participating in strenuous exercises such as tennis, golf, and rowing, which can lead to chronic muscle strain due to repetitive movements. Continue reading…
Muscle atrophy or muscle wasting is a medical term defined as a decrease in muscle mass. There are generally two forms of muscle atrophy; disuse atrophy and neurogenic atrophy. Both present similarly but have significant differences in the cause of muscle wasting. The former is a loss of muscle due to lack of physical activity while the latter is due to a problem with the nerves that connect to the muscle itself.
What causes muscle atrophy?
Disuse muscular atrophy is thought the be the most common type of muscle wasting affecting people today. The bedridden elderly is often affected. They are usually frail and weak, unable to get out of bed to exercise their muscles, leading to the wasting of muscle mass. Another common culprit is sedentary lifestyles that discourage any form of strenuous physical activity. Most people adhere to this lifestyle and are unwilling to change despite modest amounts of exercise only being needed, resulting in lower muscle mass overall.
Neurogenic muscular atrophy is much less common but far more difficult to treat. It is often the result of injuries or disease of the nerves that supply muscles. Continue reading…
Weakness, stiffness, or pain is most likely connected with a muscle or with structures related to muscles such as the bones, joints, or bursa. While it could be something as minor as muscle fatigue, or a more painful pulled upper back muscles, serious problems like muscle atrophy and muscle contractures could also be linked with nerves, autoimmune diseases, some type of cancers, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, chorea and cerebral palsy. So, it is essential to get the problem diagnosed.
Once diagnosed, a suitable treatment can help to either cure or prevent your condition from progressing. Medications can help to reduce pain, control involuntary muscle movement, or treat diseases that have caused the muscle problem. However, with no serious underlying cause, treatments for muscle problems can be much simpler, involving a prescription of exercise and a diet.