PD anand leg muscle cramps

I have recently started back on manaual exhanges from the cycycler. I have noticed over the past several weeks, I have been having these very painful leg muscle cramps in the backs of my legs. It hurts to the point that it makes it difficult to walk and I have almost fallen several times. They make my legs feel very weak. I brought this up to my PD nurse and she says that it is just that I am moving alot ofluid and to drink more fluid, whcih I have been doing… with no seeming change. Do you or any of the other patients have any suggestions on how to treat or deal with this? I would really appreciate the advice.

Thank you

There are 3 issues I would be concerned about. First, have your blood chemistries been checked? Abnormalities in electrolytes in ESRD patients can still present with muscular irritability, for example, low calcium or potassium levels. Low iron levels can also cause leg cramps. Second, if you are being told to “drink more fluids” you may need your PD prescription adjusted. If you are ultrafiltrating a lot of fluid and need to drink more to keep up, your dextrose concentration and/or frequency of exchanges may need to be changed. Third, some common medications can cause muscle problems. Are you taking a cholesterol medication like a “statin?” Sounds like you should talk this over with your nephrologist and develop a plan to address any reversible causes in cooperation with your PD nurse.


Dr. Leslie Wong, MD
Medical Director, Peritoneal Dialysis Program
Northwest Kidney Centers, Seattle, WA

Dr. Wong is answering PD questions in this forum during the month of September.