spasm

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Related to Spasms: Infantile spasms

spasm,

involuntary rigid muscle contraction, often persistent and often accompanied by pain. It usually has some underlying physical cause such as disease, strain, or injury to the muscle or nearby tissues, impairment of circulation, or a disturbance of body chemistry. The spasm may be confined to one group of muscles or it may be severe and fairly generalized, as in convulsionsconvulsion,
sudden, violent, involuntary contraction of the muscles of the body, often accompanied by loss of consciousness. It is not known what causes the abnormal impulses from the brain that result in convulsive seizures, since the disturbance may arise in normal brain
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. Painless localized spasms are called tics. These purposeless movements, usually of some part of the face, may begin as purposeful movement in response to some stimulus but eventually are carried out automatically, apparently without reason. They may disappear spontaneously after a time, or may require the elimination of some physical or psychic cause.

Spasm

 

an involuntary tonic contraction (cramp) of a muscle or group of muscles. Spasms may affect striated skeletal muscles (for example, with certain paralyses) or smooth muscles. Subject to spasms are the smooth muscles of the vascular wall (for instance, during angina pectoris), the bronchi, the esophagus (cardiospasm), and the intestine. Skeletal-muscle spasms make movement difficult, and smooth-muscle spasms disrupt various functions of organs.


Spasm

 

a sudden involuntary muscular contraction marked by extreme tension. Two types of spasms are distinguished: tonic and clonic. In tonic spasm, the tension persists for a long time, and in clonic spasm, there are synchronous jerking muscular contractions, which may be diffuse or limited. Spasms of different muscle groups are designated by specific terms, for example, trismus (spasm of the masticatory muscles) and blepharospasm (spasm of the ring muscle of the eye). Clonic spasms of the entire body are sometimes called convulsions.

Spasm may arise spontaneously or as a reaction to external influences, for example, spasm of the gastrocnemius muscles after chilling in water. It may also result from internal influences, for example, tension of the abdominal muscles in peritonitis. Spasm may be a manifestation of epilepsy, eclampsia, spasmophilia, inflammation, brain tumor and trauma, and many other disorders. In addition to spasm of striated muscles, there is spasm of smooth muscles, for example, cardiospasm and pylorospasm. In children, spasm is most common at a very early age, owing to the structure and functioning of the brain at this stage of life; it results from infection, poisoning, trauma, and various psychogenic factors.

Spasm is treated by caring for the underlying disorder and by administering such anticonvulsants as phenobarbital, primidone, and diphenylhydantoin. The affected person should get sufficient sleep and should abstain from alcohol.

V. A. KARLOV

spasm

[′spaz·əm]
(medicine)
An involuntary and abnormal contraction of isolated bundles of muscle or groups of muscles resulting from a chemical imbalance due to fatigue, ischemia, or trauma.

spasm

an involuntary muscular contraction, esp one resulting in cramp or convulsion
References in periodicals archive ?
The involvement of reflex muscle spasms resulting in a "pain-spasm-pain" cycle leads to the frequent use of muscle relaxants either alone or in combination with analgesics.
We extracted the following data from the patient files: sex, race, age of onset of infantile spasms, age at diagnosis, number of clusters per day, number of seizures per cluster, perinatal events, mode of delivery, retroviral status, aetiology, relation to tuberous sclerosis, anthropometry and developmental assessment, neuroimaging with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and electrophysiological studies with EEG.
Parental suspicions that 'something was wrong' were often discounted by health care providers, and survey respondents frequently reported that health care providers (including neurologists) were unfamiliar with infantile spasms [IS]," wrote Johnson Lay and his collaborators, in presenting results of the recently completed Assessment of Symptoms and Specialists in Infantile Spasms (ASSIST) study at the annual meeting of the American Epilepsy Society.
A few pointers that may be of value when examining a patient with convergence spasms include the following:
Children with infantile spasms often require extensive diagnostic work-up to determine etiology, expensive medications for treatment, and hospitalization during the initiation of certain therapies," researchers led by Sunita M.
A painful spasm in a muscle or group of muscles, usually in the lower leg, is known as cramp.
Wiese replaced Albie Morkel, who was added to the squad on Sunday but has since been laid low by back spasms and will take no part in the five-match series, Cricket South Africa said on Monday.
When spasms are secondary to identifiable cause the infant is usually abnormal neurologically.
Without warning Lindsey, known to her friends as Norri, developed Sti Person Syndrome - a condition that causes violent spasms and excruciating pain to consume her, leaving her gasping for breath as her body stiens into a living statue.
As mentioned in the introduction of the article, the three main characteristics of West syndrome include :1) infantile spasms, 2) regression and retardation in psychomotor development and 3) appearance of hypsarryhtmia on electroencephalogram.
Kim Adam's white rhea called Hamish - an ostrichlike bird - panicked so much his body went into spasms and he had to be put down.