Muscle fasciculation; Fasciculations of muscle
Definition Return to top
Muscle twitches are fine movements of a small area of muscle.
Considerations Return to top
Muscle twitching is the result of minor local muscle contractions or the uncontrollable twitching of a single muscle group served by a single motor nerve fiber or filament.
Muscle twitches are minor and often go unnoticed. Some are common and normal, while others indicate a neurologic disorder.
Common Causes Return to top
Benign twitches (not caused by disease or disorders)
Often affecting the eyelids, calf, or thumb
Normal and quite common, often triggered by stress or anxiety
A diet deficiency
Drug overdose (caffeine)
Drug side effect (such as diuretics, corticosteroids and estrogens)
Symptoms suggestive of a neurological cause of fasciculations include:
Wasting of muscle
Other findings of nerve dysfunction
Neurological illnesses where fasciculations are seen include:
Chronic denervation of muscle due to disk compression of nerve exiting the spinal cord
ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease)
Spinal muscular atrophy