Celine Dion gets treated for ‘severe and persistent muscle spasms’; know about this health condition
Canadian singer Celine Dion took to her website celinedion.com to announce that she has cancelled the remaining shows of her North American leg of ‘Courage World Tour’, owing to an “ongoing recovery from recent health issue”. The shows were previously rescheduled for March 9 to April 22, 2022.
The five-time Grammy Award winner had already completed the first 52 shows of the tour “before the pandemic emerged in March 2020”, the website states. But now, she has “been treated for severe and persistent muscle spasms” which are “preventing her” from performing, and her “recovery is taking longer than she hoped”.
“I was really hoping that I’d be good to go by now, but I suppose I just have to be more patient and follow the regimen that my doctors are prescribing. There’s a lot of organising and preparation that goes into our shows, and so we have to make decisions today which will affect the plans two months down the road,” the 53-year-old wrote.
“I’ll be so glad to get back to full health, as well as all of us getting past this pandemic, and I can’t wait to be back on stage again. Meanwhile, I’ve been very touched by all the words of encouragement that everyone’s been sending to me on social media. I feel your love and support and it means the world to me,” she added.
What are muscle spasms?
According to Dr Jayant Arora, director and unit head, Fortis Bone & Joint Institute, Fortis Gurugram, muscle spasms or cramps are “sudden painful and automatic contractions of muscles”, which can “affect smooth muscles (involuntary muscles found in the digestive system, circulatory system, etc.) as well as skeletal muscles”.
What causes them?
“Confining the discussion to skeletal muscle, the causes are many, but the commonest remains dehydration. Other causes include fatigue and exhaustion, thyroid insufficiency, calcium and vitamin D deficiency, vitamin E and B12 deficiency, certain genetic predispositions, disorders like myasthenia, etc.,” the doctor told this outlet.
He agreed that muscle spasms “can be quite painful and limit activities significantly”.
Dr Agnivesh Tikoo, consultant, spine surgeon, Apollo Hospitals Navi Mumbai, said the spasms may be primarily because of “problems involving the muscle or because of nerve irritation which causes a reflex spasm of the muscle. They may also be part of myofascial pain syndrome, which may involve large areas of the upper back”.
“Muscle spasms are common in the calf, lower back, but may also occur in upper limbs, abdomen and neck,” he said.
Dr Arora said prevention begins with keeping ourselves well hydrated, getting adequate rest between exercise days, optimising our levels of vitamins B, D and E. Additionally, a regular regimen of gentle stretching, warm-ups and cool-downs are also crucial. “Supplements containing carnitine are also reported to help with painful cramps. But, if one has repeated cramps that do not get better, it’s best to see a doctor to rule out other causes,” he advised.
Although muscle spasms are usually benign, they occasionally may be representing a serious underlying disease, Dr Tikoo warned.
“The treatment of muscle spasm is to address the underlying cause. Spasm because of local irritation of nerves would normally respond to stretching and removing the factor causing the irritation, like abnormal posture/pressure, unergonomic sitting habit. Electrolyte imbalance would require replenishment of nutrients/electrolytes. Rest and medications may be the first line of treatment for musculoskeletal causes like slipped discs, although one must not neglect any red flags,” he explained.
“Medical treatment and occasionally intervention is necessary when the underlying causes are serious like narrowing of arteries, pinched nerve(s), hypocalcemia and other similar causes. It is essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle and do regular stress relaxation,” the doctor concluded.