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Foot and Leg Cramps from Heart??
jpg84 posted:
Can Low oxygen levels from heart disease cause severe foot and leg cramps? I went to a Pulmonogist last month and he gave me an inhaler Advair. He thinks I have Asthma but I haven't been tested yet. I have 8 stents. 6 of these are in the RCA which is 100% closed and has caused right sided congestive heart failure. I have angina daily and use Nitro Spray. Since February, I have had severe foot and sometimes leg cramps at night. I am so tired from lack of sleep that I don't know what to do. My family dr gave me a prescription for Quinine, but Blue cross would not pay for it so I didn't get it filled. These cramps last 20 to 30 minutes with severe pain and happen 5 to 6 times a night. After all these months, now my legs hurt all the time. I am having times each day that I have breathing problems, usually brought on by activity like doing laundry or walking faster to the car than usual or even just getting dressed. I am so tired, I don't know what to do. I am 60 years old and had my first stents at age 48 and a silent heart attack in 2000. Can you help?
CardiostarUSA1 responded:
Hi Pat:

Good to hear from you my friend.

"Can low oxygen levels from heart disease cause severe foot and leg cramps?"

As reported, a shortage of/or low oxygen, may/can cause cramps in the extremities (most often the legs), which as applicable, may/can also be a result of sleep apnea.

Also, other factors/conditions that can cause/contribiute to cramps include (but are not limited to) low levels of magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium, or a raised level of lactic acid. Then of course, there is claudication (intermittent or chronic), due to peripheral artery disease (PAD), causing a shortage of blood flow and oxygen in the legs.

Take extra-extra good care,



It's your there.
jpg84 responded:
I haven't been on the boards in a long time, but I am still around. The dr has done every test for calcuim, thyroid, potassium etc that he can think of and they are normal. Maybe this Asthma test will tell me if I really have developed asthma.
flowersblue responded:
Dear jpg84,

I have leg cramps and foot cramps a lot also. Maybe not like yours, but I do and I know how painful mind are.

I purchase Quinine pills at the drug store over the counter. But they are in leg cramping pill little jar. I purchase mine at Wal Greens.

I'm 60 years old and I know about waking up at night in one of those cramps....etc. I have had them for years also. but seems like lately lot more often then I use too. I had one stint put in last Oct. The don't tell me much....I need to learn what I should ask. anyway.....

My doctor didn't seem to worry when I ask him about my leg and foot cramps. And he wrote me up sleeping med's/ I even show him my little bottle of Quinine and didn't say anything either.
James_Beckerman_MD responded:
I really feel that the first step you should take is to see your doctor.

One concern I have is that you could have peripheral vascular disease, based upon your history. There are treatments for this that could be explored with your doctor that could potentially improve your quality of life. Your breathing difficulties with exertion could have multiple causes, one of which could be coronary artery disease. Seeing your doctor is the next step to get things checked out. Take care.
An_262178 responded:
I don't know about the cardio issues, but I get really bad leg cramps and my doctor prescribed Quinine and it has been a HUGE help for me. It reall works and I can't imagine going back to waking up during the night with cramped feet & legs. My insurance doesn't pay for it either, but I will sacrafice whatever I have to so I can keep Quinine on hand for the tough nights.

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