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Joints crack snap or pop anyone??

Discussion in 'Skeleton, Skin, Muscles, Hair, Teeth, and Nails' started by sick2long, Dec 7, 2014.

  1. sick2long

    sick2long

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    I don't know if I have post lyme disease, post viral syndrome or me/cfs. I have been sick for many years.
    Does anyone experience just turning neck and getting a loud snap noise or when trying to straighten their mid back hear and feel all the bones crack? In addition my joints/ligaments are what I would call hyper mobile or weak. I am prone to injuring myself sometimes just lifting up a suitcase or even opening a tight unopened jar.
    Some days this just goes away like many other symptoms. I think it is all related somehow.
     
  2. adreno

    adreno PR activist

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    This sounds like EDS to me.
     
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  3. sick2long

    sick2long

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  4. sick2long

    sick2long

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    Not sure what EDS is. Thanks.
     
  5. adreno

    adreno PR activist

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  6. Sherlock

    Sherlock tart cherry etc. for joints, insomnia

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    Czechosherlockia, USA
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  7. jerrymcfadyen

    jerrymcfadyen Senior Member

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    I do have the same thing and just chalked it up to getting older but the way it comes and goes makes me think it's ME related. When I wake up at night, to go to the bathroom, my ankles pop so loud it sometimes wakes up my wife.
     
  8. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    These joint-popping sounds (crepitus is the medical term) are a common symptom of the Chinese "HIV-like" virus, the symptoms of which can be found on this website:

    New HIV-Like Virus in China
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2015
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  9. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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  10. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    Joint popping is generally speaking not to worry about. It is mostly due to a vacuum forming in a joint space and the lining of the joint snapping across a ridge or bulge in the hard tissue to fill the vacuum. Of course there are lots of normal people who crack their hand joints on purpose to annoy people who cannot do it. It is not a sign of inflammation because if there is inflammation the joint has an effusion of fluid in it so a vacuum does not form. Neck cracking is very common over the age of 40 because of the ridges that form around the discs in almost everybody. Cracking also gets more common in shoulders, ankles and knees probably again as ridges form around the 'gnarled' bone of middle age. None of this is unhealthy although it sometimes gives quite a nasty twinge.
     
  11. optimist

    optimist Senior Member

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    Norway
  12. jerrymcfadyen

    jerrymcfadyen Senior Member

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    East Bend, NC USA
  13. Valentijn

    Valentijn Senior Member

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    Cracking joints, especially in my back, relieves some of the pain and stiffness there.
     
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  14. Sherlock

    Sherlock tart cherry etc. for joints, insomnia

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    Hiya, Jonathan. I'd heard decades ago about 'nitrogen bubbles' and 'vacuums' inside joints causing cracks and pops. Maybe that's true for average people. But that has nothing to do with my condition, which is very much related to inflammation, which also explains why it comes and goes along with inflammation. In the average people who make videos of themselves popping their knuckles, they don't have that periodic nature and thehy don't have CFS.

    I've always cracked most of my joints, but it gets much worse in periods of inflammation, often coinciding with times when my eyes are burning. I recall one such day when I cracked my right wrist about 60 times - my left wrist none. The noise comes from the bone going back to where it belongs, it's all about the mechanical action - not vacuums or fluids. It gets out of place because my tendons and ligaments aren't keeping things in place, which is probably due to a connective tissue disorder and aggravated episodically by mast cell proteases.

    As far as harm? It's supposedly not harmful to crack a joint, but it certainly can sometimes be harmful to use a joint when it is out of place. Such as in my deadlift story: http://forums.phoenixrising.me/inde...pain-sub-conscious-anxiety.30578/#post-467548
     
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  15. Sherlock

    Sherlock tart cherry etc. for joints, insomnia

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    Yes, exactly. When a joint is out of place, the surrounding muscles tighten up to stabilize it. When you crack the joint and put things back in their proper place, the muscles can instantly relax, which relieves the burning muscle pain in the lower back that occurs when lying too long.
     
  16. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    You are right to say that the nitrogen bubbles people have shown when people with hypermobile MCP joints crack them on purpose do not occur with most cracking. In most cases of of cracking as far as we know there is just a transient vacuum or very low pressure which 'sucks' the soft tissue into a new place, which as you say occurs when bone moves into a new place. It is the same thing as far as I can see. The fact that one can do this repeatedly when moving tendon or ligament over bone from one position to another indicates that it is not dependent on formation of a nitrogen bubble. The MCP joint crackers can usually only do it once and then have to wait for the nitrogen to resorb.

    I appreciate that your cracking seems to relate to sa sense of inflammation but it is hard to see how this works. Inflammation makes things swollen and stiff. It reduces range of mobility and the likelihood of bones shifting out of place. You may get inflammation as a reaction to a subluxation but inflammation does not encourage subluxation. It is a bit like the difference between a plastic drink bottle when full of lemonade and one that you have squeezed empty and screwed the lid on. The full one will not crack but the empty one will if you press it - and go into kinked shapes. People with gross inflammation from rheumatoid arthritis do not get cracking in their joints - just grinding if the cartilage surface has been eaten away and worn down.
     
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  17. Sherlock

    Sherlock tart cherry etc. for joints, insomnia

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    Well, I've learned to not refer to inflammation as if it is a single thing. (E.g., MCs have many differet products with different effects.) I'm referring to mast cell proteases presumably weakening the supporting tendons, thereby allowing the joint to more readily go out of place. Not to hostamine and downstream signallers creating increased permeability. Btw, I only have had bad joint problems after 4 years of getting CFS, so it's not even been consistent in me.

    I've also had plenty of experience with tendons getting weaker during inflammation - in that I could lift less weight.

    "It is a bit like the difference between a plastic drink bottle when full of lemonade and one that you have squeezed empty and screwed the lid on. The full one will not crack but the empty one will if you press it - and go into kinked shapes."
    I'm generally referring to use of force large enough to overcome any hydraulic type of immobilization.

    "People with gross inflammation from rheumatoid arthritis do not get cracking in their joints - just grinding if the cartilage surface has been eaten away and worn down."
    Yep, but I'm not referring to the immune system destroying cartilage; I'm referring to temporary weakening of tendons.
     
  18. Valentijn

    Valentijn Senior Member

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    This might be what I have ... once I crack a joint, it won't crack again, usually for an hour or more. A couple exceptions are my left jaw, which started bothering me about a year before ME onset, and my left shoulder, which now makes cracking sounds any time I roll it around, though it doesn't "feel" like a proper crack.

    I'm also quite hypermobile, and started cracking fingers at around age 7 when another girl showed me how to do it. But then it was more something fun to do to annoy people, rather than something that felt good. It started feeling good/necessary about a year after Lyme exposure (dozens of tick bites) when I was 15. Then I started working out several ways to crack my back, and was regularly cracking my elbows, knees, wrists, and hips.
     
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  19. Sherlock

    Sherlock tart cherry etc. for joints, insomnia

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    @Jonathan Edwards Btw, I never get swelling and then cracking. I get the overall inflammation and subsequently "my joints are loose" and are thereby much more crackable and are also susceptible to injury.

    In fact, I never get joint swelling at all, unless I continue to use a finger that's badly affected - at which point the joint can get large and very injured, to the point where merely clicking a mouse hurts noticeably and makes things even more swollen and fibrotic.

    Not all inflammation necessarily involves swelling, of course.
     
  20. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    Interesting thoughts, but I doubt you can temporarily weaken a tendon. Tendons and ligaments are pretty much like ropes and shock cords. Either they hold or they snap, in which case unless a surgeon stitches them up they never go back to the length they were - that is certainly what happens for long head of biceps or Achilles tendon and cruciate ligaments, which is why tearing one is such a disaster for a professional athlete.

    I think lifting would be to do with muscles, unless a tendon actually tore apart.

    And I don't think you can actually overcome hydraulic immobilisation! Try squashing a pint of beer into a smaller size. It is not very rewarding. Hydraulics can lift 40 ton lorries. If you try to bend something full of water all that happens is that something snaps and the water leaks out - which is actually not uncommon in swollen knees.

    I realise that there are all sorts of situations here but my main thought about the original question about popping joints is that they are usually not a sign of anything to worry about.
     

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