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Dr. Bob
Dr. Bob, Neurologist (MD)
Category: Neurology
Satisfied Customers: 5330
Experience:  Neurology & Int Medicine (US Trained): 20 yrs experience
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Doctor. Lately I have been having joint pain in different

Customer Question

Hi doctor. Lately I have been having joint pain in different parts of my body which comes and goes but it has significantly improved. The joints looked inflamed and red in color and my knees were swollen until it improved. However I started to have some twitching in my body which also comes and goes. The twitching or spasms last only a few second before moving to a different part of my body. Is this all an early sign of ALS? I used to have difficulty typing due to pain in my joints but it also has improved a lot. I heard that ALS symptoms don't improve and they get worse while mine gets better. I just want some reassurance from you doctor.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Neurology
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The main issue I'm facing lately is joint pain which travels from different parts of my body to another accompanied by quick occasional muscle spasms. The only good sign is that symptoms don't last long
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
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Expert:  Dr. Bob replied 1 year ago.
Hi there. Have you been evaluated for your joint pain? You may have a rheumatologic condition such as rheumatoid arthritis. If so, there are effective treatments available to help prevent flare ups and manage pain.
That said, joint pain and swelling are NOT features of ALS, nor is a pattern of brief, migratory cramping or fasciculations such as you describe. In addition, you are too young for this to be a serious consideration.
Don't worry about ALS at this point. Focus on your joint issues and getting this worked up by your family doctor or a rheumatologist.
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the help doctor. Yes, I had some blood tests and everything was normally but a slightly elevated CRP of 7.0 mg/L which the doctor said is in the normal range. However I am seeing the doctor soon for further followup.It does not seem to be ALS at all but more of an arthritic pain as you mentioned.
Expert:  Dr. Bob replied 1 year ago.
You're welcome. Hope all works out for the best for you.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi doctor there is just one question that keeps on bugging me. I read that ALS causes weakness in limbs. I feel weakness in my left arm (weak joints) such that it feels really light and slightly loose. Can the possible arthritis cause this? The muscles dont feel weak but the joints feel weak because of the inflammation from the past 2 months. I also get numbness in my fingers when I sleep.
Expert:  Dr. Bob replied 1 year ago.
Yes, joint pain can lead to what is called "pain limited" strength, which can feel like weakness even when the muscles are working properly. If one does not use a limb due to pain, one can develop atrophy of the muscles and subsequent weakness.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can you explain this statement doctor "If one does not use a limb due to pain, one can develop atrophy of the muscles and subsequent weakness."
Expert:  Dr. Bob replied 1 year ago.
In other words, any weakness that develops is likely to be from babying it too much (i.e. not using it as you normally would). This can cause the muscles to thin (since they are not being used) and weaken over time. This would not be from a primary neuro disorder like ALS but rather from the condition causing the pain.

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