spasm

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Related to muscle spasm: Muscle cramp, Muscle twitch

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 ?
com Try this: Take an anti-inflammatory painkiller such as ibuprofen and hold a hot-water bottle to the back of your neck to reduce pain and muscle spasms.
When she came out, she was relieved because the doctor had told her it was only a muscle spasm.
In some cases, CT Scan guided Botox(R) injections can break the cycle of muscle spasm long enough to lead to permanent relief of chronic pain.
If smooth muscle spasms are a problem, an anti-spasmodic, such as belladonna, should be employed.
A snapshot of the global therapeutic scenario for Muscle Spasm.
In some cases however the muscle spasm caused by the fissure interferes with the blood supply.
They were trapped together by a muscle spasm after a friend of the groom found them having sex in the toilets.
The jolts are known by medics as "hypna-gocic jerks" and are a form of muscle spasm caused when your heartbeat slows down.
But she said doctors were treating him for a muscle spasm and wanted to send him home.
In the United States alone, more than 100,000 persons experience some form of involuntary muscle spasm.
The disease needs immediate treatment in hospital with antitoxin injections, antibiotics and sedatives to relieve muscle spasm.