It Started With A Twitch


AtosMy doctor’s eyebrows shot up considerably when I mentioned that I was used to Restless Leg Syndrome. I’ve had it for as long as I can remember – that itching, burning, tickling, almost-pain coming from inside my limbs – and so I couldn’t quite fathom the possible significance of this. I would soon find out.

It began with night cramps. You know, those strong cramps you can get in your feet and then those truly brutal “Charley Horses” in your legs. My sleep was disturbed and, therefore, my disposition was anything but sunny.

MasterNot a happy bunny

The pain then spread to my hands, and then my ankles swelled. My coordination disappeared completely. I spent most of my days in bed and had to get around the entire house with a walking stick.

My doctor gave me painkillers (strong ones), but after ten days I was still crying with pain and back to my doctor I went. Blood tests were ordered. I have been sleeping with my feet on pillows, if I can manage to sleep at all. My feet and ankles swelled so much that I had to remove my socks (which I never do, as I cannot abide bare feet) and start wearing my husband’s slippers – twice the size of mine – which I am still having to do.

Vit DThese little pills were part of the answer: Vitamin D – and a very strong dose. On my side of the pond they are Tardis Blue, but over in the States they appear to be green. Just three days in and I am feeling better; I am still in pain, but I can walk around the living room again – even if I’m still wearing Dom’s slippers.

I am posting this because Vitamin D deficiency is far more common than people think; some of us actually can’t get much exposure to sunlight due to location and/or colouring and so this is something we should all be aware of. Fifty percent of people in the British Isles are vitamin D deficient. My colouring is true Viking, and so I can’t go out in the sun for long, and neither can many other people.

Symptoms of Vit D deficiency:

Early on: cramps that you might dismiss as nothing

Mood swings

Restless Leg Syndrome, that you may never have experienced before

Itching from the inside all over the body

Later: Swelling of the ankles and possibly the wrists

Vomiting

Loss of appetite

Being in too much pain to walk

A blue colouration around the ankles and feet

Please see a doctor if you have these symptoms; all vitamin deficiencies have the potential to make you very sick or even to kill.

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About Missus Tribble

Media volunteer for Epilepsy Action (UK) and advocate for both epilepsy and autism awareness. Seamstress, cross-stitcher, sci-fi lover, ukulele player and Chelmsford's own Pickling Pagan who wants to inherit a TARDIS when she grows up. In the process of writing an as yet unnamed book, with anecdotes and information about being epileptic and autistic - and seeing the funny side! Also an entertainment journalist for What Culture, where I write about Doctor Who.
This entry was posted in Blood Tests, Health, Ongoing Illness, Vitamin D. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to It Started With A Twitch

  1. OVH says:

    Back in 2012 I was diagnosed as Vitamin D deficient. I had a course of the intense once a week pills for a few weeks and then I started a Vitamin D supplement w/ over the counter Vitamin D. I’m fine now, but I didn’t know. I never became symptomatic, and after reading what you went through, I am glad.

    *supportive hugs*

    • Thanks for your comment. This could probably all have been averted many years ago, but the town I was living in ten years ago isn’t known for its healthcare. When I came to Chelmsford it took a year to diagnose my B12 deficiency (whilst looking for something completely unrelated) but my doctor here is thorough, knows that my entire body is a living anomaly and checks for everything under the sun and beyond the sun when I become unwell.

      With any luck the vitamin D and the calcium pills that are being introduced in a couple of weeks will stop the pain :)

  2. Really glad you got the right diagnosis and are on the mend. Also sending supportive hugs. X

  3. y_ddraenog_goch_2 says:

    I’m glad that your Vitamin D has been diagnosed and that your treatment is beginning to work.

    For about six months now, I have (on my own initiative) been taking a daily multivitamin-and-iron
    supplement, and also 1-gram Vitamin C tablets, just to make sure that I’m getting enough. I’m
    feeling quite a bit more alert and active as a result.

    • y_ddraenog_goch_2 says:

      Oops; where did ‘deficiency’ go? Firefox has been behaving oddly tonight, chopping off the ends of my lines, and folding them over too, so perhaps that’s what happened to it…

  4. It’s amazing how something so simple can cause so much problems. I’m glad that it’s also something they can fix easily for you. Xxx

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