Magnesium/Calcium (1990's, '08, '14) & Blepharospasm

Learn more about blepharospasm (eye twitch).

The research is far from conclusive about whether one's magnesium / calcium balance is treatable cause for blepharospasm. There have been a number of annecdotal reports. In each, calcium or magnesium is involved. Calcium and magnesium need to be in balance in the body because they have opposite functions. Calcium contracts muscles, magnesium relaxes muscles.

However, it is true that eye twitch is widely considered to be a symptom of a magnesium deficiency and that many people's calcium/magnesium balance is off, especially for women taking calcium for osteoporosis, or people taking medications which affect the calcium/magnesium balance.

The current daily value for magnesium is 400mg, which you can also get through high magnesium foods like dark leafy greens, nuts, seeds, fish, beans, whole grains, avocado, etc. Read more about magnesium food sources.

2014

In this article about magnesium deficiency, eye twitch is indicated as one of the symptoms.

Source: 10 signs that you're magnesium deficient, Good Health, New Zealand, 2014

2006

This case study reported that a patient who was taking a calcium-channel blocker for her dizziness developed chronic blepharospasm. A calcium channel blocker prevents calcium from entering blood vessel walls, thus allowing them to relax. She was taking cinnarizine, and so blepharospasm should be considered a side effect.

Authors: H. Alonso-Navarro, F. Jimenez-Jimenez, Tardive blepharospasm associated with cinnarizine use, Clinical Neuropharmacology, July-August, 2006.

1999

In this case study doctors discovered that a patient with pseudoblepharospasm and muscle weakness had developed antibodies against calcium and her immune system was over-reacting. She was treated with both an immune-response inhibitor and a potassium channel-blocker (which inhibits calcium channel activity). The eye muscle spasms were reduced.

This case study suggests that the calcium / magnesium balance may be of interest.

Authors: N. Kanzato, M. Motomura, et al,
Published: Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome with ophthalmoparesis and pseudoblepharospasm, Muscle & Nerve, December, 1999.

1990

A French doctor reports that treating his patients with magnesium almost always reduces the symptoms, severity and duration of blepharospasm. He treated patients for six months to a year with 150mg magnesium; adjusting the amount for each patient as needed.

Author: C. Ploceniak
Published: Bruxism and magnesium, my clinical experiences since 1980, Revue de Stomatologie et de Chirurgie Maxillo-faciale, 1990.
You can read the full article here.