How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 31323
Experience:  MBBS MS. Post doctoral fellowship in Sports Medicine. General surgeon and sports medicine specialist
Type Your Medical Question Here...
Dr. Arun Phophalia is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have cramps in my upper torso. I have been having this problem

Resolved Question:

I have cramps in my upper torso. I have been having this problem for many years. I take calcium/ Magnizium, Vit. D. I also drink tonic water, but the cramps continue.
The cramps are centered in the abdomin and the muscles above the rib cage. The doctors have run mnay test, but everything comes back normal. Any ideas what it may be, or any other suggestions on how to stop the cramps?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 6 years ago.



Are you on any medications?

Any diagnosed medical condition?

Do you work in hot humid condition?

Are you sedentary, over weight?

Did your blood work entail hormonal work up?

Are the cramps more in night time?

Do you have cramps in the limbs also?


Dr. Arun

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Are you on any medications?

I'm on simvastatin and niaspan for high colesterol,but I started having these cramps prior to taking this medication.


Any diagnosed medical condition? Just high colestoral, which is under control with the above mentioned medication.


Do you work in hot humid condition?No


Are you sedentary, over weight? I'm not seditary, but I am about 20 lbs over weight.


Did your blood work entail hormonal work up? No


Are the cramps more in night time? They happen at all times of the day and it is not broghtr on by any patrticular activities.


Do you have cramps in the limbs also? Yes, but not that often.


Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 6 years ago.

Thanks for the answer.


An hormonal assessment may give clue to the excessive cramps; especially of thyroid hormones and parathyroid hormones. People who have recurrent cramps, just a small stretching of the muscles may send the muscles in the spasms/cramps. The exact cause is not well understood, but there are some risk factors that are thought to contribute to this condition:


1) Muscle fatigue,

2) Heavy exercising,

3) Dehydration,

4) Over weight

5) Electrolyte imbalances,

6) Vitamin deficiency,


The medical causes related to the disease process are; 1) Calcium and phosphorus imbalances can cause cramping.

2) Low potassium or sodium (salt) levels.

3) Deficiencies of a nutrient called hesperidin, an antioxidant flavonoid found in oranges and other citrus fruits, have also been linked to night time cramps.

4) Overexertion, standing on concrete for long periods, or prolonged sitting may contribute to cramps.

5) Having structural disorders in the legs or feet (such as flat feet, genu recurvatum, and the hypermobility syndrome) may increase the risk for cramps. A family history is common in these circumstances.

6) Among the many medical causes of muscle cramping include hypothyroidism, Addison's disease, uremia, hypoglycemia, anemia, and certain medications. Various diseases, such as Parkinson's, that affect nerves and muscles cause leg cramps. Peripheral neuropathy, a complication of diabetes in which the nerves in the extremities are impaired, can cause cramp-like pain, numbness, or tingling in the legs.

Electrolyte imbalances is generally considered the most common main cause. A blood electrolyte level can help you in ruling in or ruling out this (if this has not been done earlier). Some researchers believe inadequate stretching and muscle fatigue leads to abnormalities in mechanisms that control muscle contraction. Other factors may also be involved, including over exertion and dehydration.


Prevention of the cramps is the best cure; for that following measures should be employed:

1) Drink water at regular intervals, even whey you are not thirsty.

2) Drink more than what you require.

3) Drink fruit juice or a sports beverage if the working conditions are hot and one sweats a lot.

4) If cramps occur frequently, stretching exercises help. Muscle relaxant like chlorzoxazone can also help.

5) During the week, swimming and water exercises are a good way to keep muscles stretched, and wearing supportive footwear is also important.

6) Eating more nuts, seeds, seafood and low-fat dairy would help.

7) Also, take Calcium and vitamin D with a supplement of magnesium and zinc a day. Gatorade, can help as it contain electrolytes.


Stretching exercises would be the mainstay of the preventing the cramps. Remember, torso is connected with the limbs. So stretching of the limbs as well as torso is important.


Please feel free for your follow up questions.


Dr. Arun

Edited by Dr. Arun Phophalia on 7/10/2010 at 6:11 AM EST
Dr. Arun Phophalia and 5 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you