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Dennis Fuller asked...

I have found that my calves get tired very easily.

For the last few years I have found that my calves get tired very easily, often resulting in painful cramps.

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The answer

There are many reasons for calf pain and cramps, but before you do anything else you need to get the blood circulation in your legs checked. Peripheral Arterial Disease, or PAD, can cause intermittent calf pains on exercise. It’s a marker of potentially serious damage to your cardiovascular system and means you’re at greatly increased risk of heart attack and stroke. Your doctor may have a machine at the GP’s surgery to check your ABPI, which will tell if your blood circulation is okay. You also need some blood tests – low calcium, sodium, potassium, blood sugar and an under- or overactive thyroid gland can also cause cramps. So can some medicines, including statin tablets. Problems with your nervous system could certainly cause pain in the muscles, but if you don’t think this is the cause, talk to your GP.

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