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Muscle pain (myalgia) is a common complaint and is most frequently related to overuse or muscle injury from unaccustomed exercise or work. In these situations the cause of the muscle pain is fairly obvious. However, muscle pain can accompany many other conditions such as infectious disease, autoimmune disease, parasitosis and other problems. Muscle pain may accompany other symptoms such as joint pain (arthralgia), fever, or general ill feeling (malaise).
Muscle injury may result from exercise or overuse. It takes about 48 hours for a muscle to heal from minor overuse. Any time that the muscles are sore following exercise, it indicates some extent of muscle damage.
For muscle pain, both rest and exercise are important. Muscle aches from overuse and trauma often respond well to cold and/or warm compresses, massage, and temporary decreased use or rest. Heat, warm baths, massage, and gentle stretching exercises after a rest period should be used as frequently as possible. Regular exercise (slowly increased from very gentle to more vigorous) may help restore the proper muscle tone (walking, cycling, and swimming are recommended).
Muscular aches associated with specific diseases are best controlled by treating the primary illness according to instructions given by your health care provider.
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Allergy: Hypersensitivity caused by exposure to a particular antigen (allergen), resulting in an increased reactivity to that antigen on subsequent exposure, sometimes with harmful immunologic consequences.
Arthralgia: Severe throbbing or stabbing pain along a nerve in one or more joints.
Autoimmune Disease: One of a large group of diseases in which the immune system turns against the body's own cells, tissues and organs, leading to chronic and often deadly conditions. Examples include multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus, Bright's disease and diabetes.
Cholesterol: A waxy, fat-like substance manufactured in the liver and found in all tissues, it facilitates the transport and absorption of fatty acids. In foods, only animal products contain cholesterol. An excess of cholesterol in the bloodstream can contribute to the development of atherosclerosis.
Dermatomyositis: A diffuse connective tissue disease.
Enzymes: Specific protein catalysts produced by the cells that are crucial in chemical reactions and in building up or synthesizing most compounds in the body. Each enzyme performs a specific function without itself being consumed. For example, the digestive enzyme amylase acts on carbohydrates in foods to break them down.
Fibromyalgia: (FMS): Originally named fibrositis, it is a mysteriously debilitating syndrome that attacks women more often than men. It is not physically damaging to the body in any way, but is characterized by the constant presence of widespread pain that often moves about the body. Fibromyalgia can be so severe that it is often incapacitating.
Gram: (gm): A metric unit of weight, there being approximately 28 grams in one ounce.
Malaise: A vague feeling of bodily discomfort, as at the beginning of an illness. A general sense of depression or unease.
Myalgia: Diffuse muscle pain.
Vitamin C: Also known as ascorbic acid, Vitamin C is a water-soluble antioxidant vitamin essential to the body's health. When bound to other nutrients, for example calcium, it would be referred to as "calcium ascorbate". As an antioxidant, it inhibits the formation of nitrosamines (a suspected carcinogen). Vitamin C is important for maintenance of bones, teeth, collagen and blood vessels (capillaries), enhances iron absorption and red blood cell formation, helps in the utilization of carbohydrates and synthesis of fats and proteins, aids in fighting bacterial infections, and interacts with other nutrients. It is present in citrus fruits, tomatoes, berries, potatoes and fresh, green leafy vegetables.
Vitamin D: A fat-soluble vitamin essential to one's health. Regulates the amount of calcium and phosphorus in the blood by improving their absorption and utilization. Necessary for normal growth and formation of bones and teeth. For Vitamin D only, 1mcg translates to 40 IU.