Spasmophilia: what is it?

Spasmophilia what is it

Better known in France than abroad, spasmophilia affects 10 to 15 million people in France and mainly women. This condition, whose causes and contours are difficult to define, is subject to debate. An attack of spasmophilia can be impressive, for the one who experiences it as for those who attend it. It is similar to a tetany attack.

The main manifestations of an attack are a feeling of discomfort, tingling in the extremities, hyperventilation, cramps and contractures. They can be accompanied by headaches, dizziness, nausea, attacks of tears and tremors. A spasmophilia attack can occur suddenly and last 10 to 60 minutes.

Spasmophilia: a chronic state of neuromuscular hyperexcitability

Spasmophilia is often referred to as idiopathic, since its outlines are not clearly defined and it is difficult to determine the causes. For some researchers, it is linked to deficiencies, especially in magnesium, calcium, trace elements and vitamin D. For others, spasmophilia is due to a difficulty in adapting to his lifestyle, hyperemotivity and great nervous tension. The crises would be, in this case, an exacerbated reaction to an external stress.

Among the many theories on the causes, a common observation remains: spasmophilia is a chronic state of neuromuscular hyperexcitability. In all patients, this state would be latent, and can be verified in particular by electromyogram. Spasmophilia is also most often not considered as a disease, but rather as a condition, close to normal, the appearance of symptoms of which depends on factors exogenous.

Another point in common between the theories and different definitions of spasmophilia: there is no organ damage.

Hyperventilation during spasmophilia attacks creates a risk of respiratory alkalosis

To calm a spasmophilia attack, it is important to isolate the person in a quiet place, to comfort them and to avoid passages that could increase their feeling of panic. Then place his hands in a conch shell in front of his nose and mouth, or give him a paper bag, and help him calm his breathing. Beforehand, learn to master your breathing will facilitate this step.

Hyperventilation and increased respiratory rate during spasmophilia attacks create a risk ofalkalosis respiratory: the spasmophile expires more than carbon dioxide as needed. Her pressure blood dioxide decreases and the pH of the blood becomes more alkaline. Calming the breathing for a more normal rhythm is therefore important.

If these practices do not work and the spasmophilia crisis lasts, the patient must then be put in lateral safety position before calling for help.

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