spasm

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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 ?
Commonly, infantile spasms are associated with hypoxic-ischemic insult, tuberous sclerosis and cortical malformations.10 Children may present with infantile spasms alone or in combinations of West syndrome.
In our study, 2 patients had seizure remission on follow-up consultation, and 2 had persistent infantile spasms. The remainder had evolved to other seizure types.
Daniella was warned infantile spasms are very closely linked with autism so she began preparing for a hard life she never dreamed of.
Hussain, a pediatric epilepsy specialist and director of the Infantile Spasms Program at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Jacobson et al., "Perceived efficacy of cannabidiol-enriched cannabis extracts for treatment of pediatric epilepsy: a potential role for infantile spasms and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome," Epilepsy & Behavior, vol.
"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.
We started recording her episodes and sent them to our doctors in the UK who confirmed in March that Grace has Infantile Spasms (West Syndrome)," said Richie.
Long-term prognosis after infantile spasms: a statistical study of prognostic factors in 200 cases.
Infantile spasms quickly followed, and the parents were informed at 5 months that she had a cortical visual impairment.
These results and electroencephalography findings were attributed as the diagnosis of infantile spasms (IS).
She seems to be getting worse as she has cerebral palsy, infantile spasms, epilepsy and some sight problems."