I can't sleep I have severe pain in the muscles in the calves of my legs

I have my ankles fused and I also have knee and hip replacements. This is the reason my physio therapist gave me for having this pain. But I think they should be able to give me something to sleep. I am nearly out of mind I have not slept for days. If I do drop off to sleep it is just about half an hour and the pain wakes me up. I think why me. Any advise please

12 Replies

  • This is dreadful, you poor love. Your GP must be able to find medication for you. Sounds like you need something to relax the muscles to give you pain relief although I know they are reluctant to prescribe things like Valium.

    Make a nuisance of yourself and keep pressurising your GP. xx

  • Thanks for your help. I will go to Gp this week and see what he says. If I take Amatriptline I am up sleep walking. Thanks again for your advise

  • Poor you. If your Physio is right ( and he/ she should know), then surely something can be done to ease the calf muscles. I wonder if you can manage a hot bath before going to bed?

    I do take one Temazepan at night. I know they can be addictive, but the steroids keep me buzzing all night without it. It certainly relaxes me. Valium has a longer life, I believe, but is more addictive.

  • Thanks for your help. When I have taken Amateiptline I usually end up sleep walking. But I will go to my Gp this week and see what happens. Thanks again for advise.

  • Hi Toni: sorry you're in so much pain. Why don't you visit a pain specialist. They should be able to help you as well as suguest different ways in which you can get pain relief. Good luck and God Bless.

  • Hi there I do feel so sorry for you, my rheumy put me on sleeping tablet years ago, trouble is I am addicted and need to take it every night and wish I could get off it, so thats why most doctors hesitate to prescribe.It would be good if you could have something a couple of times a week. have you tried amatriptiline? wishing you well.

  • My Dr gave me Amitriptylin to sleep... it helps with sleeping and with the pain. The only bad side is I get nightmares, and I wake up groggy, but that goes away, and I finally get a good night sleep. On alternate days, I have tremazapan, a prescription sleeping pill, and it works wonders. See if your Dr will prescribe one of those for you. Good Luck and wishing you a good night sleep!

  • I had calf paim/cramps, especially at night, had low magnesium levels due to long term use of PPI (Lansoprazle) . Stopped the PPI and was given magnesium supplement. It took a while but levels improved and so did the pain. I was only on the PPI as a precaution to prevent gastric ulcers because I'm on long term Prednisolone.

    I should have read the information sheet properly, as it suggests that magnesium levels should be checked before starting the PPI. Neither the doctor or Pharmacist said anything. I read all the info sheets now, especially since the pharmacy issues my meds by different manufacturers each time (whatever is the cheapest).

    The last 4 issues of Paracetamol had all different manufactures, one info sheet was dated 2009, two 2012 and the other 2013.

    My friend Shirley has Fibromyalgia, she had a lot of pain in her leg muscles especially her calfs and is now on Gabapentin. She started on the low dose and had to increase it twice but now has found the right amount. She said that some days she has some pain but generally none and now she can get out the house where as before it was hard to get out of bed to get to the bathroom.

  • You've probably tried these, but its better to try…

    For cramps I was once told to try tonic water because the quinine helps. If you're taking a cocktail of meds, probably best to check with GP.

    On the sleeping routine I've had insomnia on and off for many years. I try having a regular bedtime - not too early if you're insomniac. Don't use a tablet computer or anything else like that because apparently the blue light tells you to wake up. I find that a little reading and then lights out. If you can't get to sleep or wake up in the middle of the night its best not to worry. if you can. Sometimes it helps to get up and start the routine again after a little read. I have my iPod radio on very softly on a talk station (favourite is radio 4/world service, but podcasts or a audio book would do). That way you're soothed to sleep hopefully by the very quiet voices.

    So I think the main aims are not to get upset if you can't sleep and to have a routine. Its a horrible thing and I really hope you can get some help on this.

  • Hiya sorry to hear you are having a rough time. I use amitriptyline to help me sleep through pain. I'm on 10mg at the mo but sometimes can manage with 5mg ( syrup). I find it invaluable. My pain is in my ribs and sternum and apparently cannot be helped so without amitriptyline I wouldn't sleep. I would also advise talking to your gp or rheumatologist. If you do try amitrip take it at least 2 hours before bed. Good luck x

  • Thanks very much for your help. Amritiptyline does not agree with me. I end up sleep walking and have missed my footing and fell while on that. I shall go to the doctor this week and ask him about the other medication you recommended or even a pain clinic. Thanks very much for all your help.

  • Hi Tonie,

    Sorry to hear that you are in so much pain. Arthritis research UK do a very good publication called:

    "Living with long term pain: A guide to self management."

    You can download it from their site from the following link:


    Or you can order a hard copy from their publications section:


    It is full of information on the subject. And has been suggested by others, go back to your GP and see if there is more that they can help you with. There may also be a pain clinic at your local hospital. Hope this helps you.


    Beverley (NRAS Helpline)

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