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Why is my father getting frequent body cramps?

Q: My father is 71 years old. He is a diabetic and has a heart problem. For the past six months he is getting cramps in various parts of his body (generally lower back and legs), which are very painful and almost renders him immobile. The effect lasts for a long time. Please suggest some medication or preventive measures for this.

A:Cramps in the legs is a common problem associated with diabetes mellitus. It is sometimes due to imbalance of electrolytes in the blood. I presume your father is attending a diabetic clinic where they will check him for this. Sometimes, quinine sulphate is given for these cramps, if there is no contraindication for prescribing quinine. Perhaps you would see your doctor and discuss this with him. If he/she considers it appropriate then they will give a prescription for quinine sulphate.

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