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What Causes Cramps During Dialysis

2013-12-30 15:40

What Causes Cramps During DialysisLeg cramps or muscle cramps occur commonly during dialysis. In some cases, muscle cramps are so painful that dialysis treatments has to be terminated earlier than planned. If serious, they can also make dialysis patients can hardly move. Knowing the causes of cramps during dialysis can help patients find correct managements.


Even though dialysis can replace diseased kidneys to filter out extra fluid and waste products, it can’t be as effective as healthy kidneys. This is because kidneys work 24 hour the whole day, while hemodialysis is usually taken 3 time or less one week. Therefore, dialysis is easy to lead to the following problem, thus causing muscle or leg cramps.

- Calcium and phosphorus imbalance: Dialysis is unable to remove out phosphorus efficiently, so extra phosphorus deposits in the blood easily. Generally, the higher phosphorus level, the lower calcium level. Low calcium level is one cause of muscle cramps for dialysis patients.

- Vitamin E deficiency: It is reported that vitamin E is helpful in reducing and preventing cramps during dialysis treatment. If patients are lack of vitamin E, it can increase the risk of muscle or leg cramps.

- Increased ultrafiltration: If dialysis patients weight gain too much during dialysis sessions, fluid should be taken out of the body at a fast rate or too much fluid is discharged out. This can lead to cramps directly.

- Dialysate with low concentrations of sodium: This is another reason that can increase the risk of muscle or leg cramps. From this point, you had better tell your doctors immediately so they can modify the concentration of your dialysate.


Since the cause of cramps during dialysis changes from person to person, you had better find out what causes your problem before taking any treatment. If it is associated with calcium and phosphorus imbalance, you had better limit the intake of phosphorus-containing foods and take some phosphorus binders at safe dosage. If you haven’t found correct treatment, you can ask help from kidney experts at kidneyabc clinic. Leave a message below or send email to kidneyabc@hotmail.com. Either is OK.

If you send us email, please leave your phone number or WhatsApp/Viber (with country code) in email so that our renal expert can communicate with you timely and directly. We will do utmost to help you solve the problems.

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