Charley Horse Definition, Causes and More

By shirley
Reviewed: dr. vanta
Article Sources Article Sources
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Cause: Reduced Blood Flow

A charley horse may develop if there is decreased blood flow to the muscles. Some people report leg cramping at night if their legs become cold. In this instance, the blood vessels constrict, restricting blood flow and causing muscle spasms.3Publishing, Harvard Health. ‘Take That, Muscle Cramps!’ Harvard Health,

Cramping can occur if a circulatory disorder such as atherosclerosis is present. This condition causes narrowing of the arteries and may restrict blood flow to the extremities. In this case, muscle spasms may develop during walking or exercise and ease when activity ends.4‘Muscle Cramp.’ Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 3 Mar. 2021,

Charley Horse

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