Information about the shakes


Registered User
Jan 21, 2007
Hi I am new to this forum.
My mum is well into the middle stage of AZ she is 79yrs old and cared for by my dad whom is fantastic; he has family around him for some support. Recently mum has started to shake almost uncontrolably sometimes for an hour at a time. It is the first time I am witnessing what seems to be her really suffering. Is this experienced by anyone else. The consultant has said it is a frequent occurance by some people that become a distressed or worried. It is very upsetting to see, how can she be helped. We try talking calmly about anything, holding her hands and reassuring her that it will soon pass.:confused:


Registered User
Jan 4, 2006
Hi Happiness,
Welcome to TP. I can't help you with this at the moment, ut am sure that it was raised before Christmas, so will try and trace the thread. I am certain someone else will soon be along with some information.
Love Helen


Registered User
Jan 21, 2007
thank you

Thank you for your quick reply Helen.It is reassuring being new to TP to know that it is in constant use. I appreciate your input. I have been looking at a site about myoclonus / clonus also information gathered from TP which may give me a starting point.


Registered User
Feb 20, 2006
North West England
Hi There...

Dear Happiness,

My husband has 'clonus', as the Docs call it.

Yes, he had developed epilepsy as a result of his numerous strokes, and more recently in the last year or so, as his BIG seizures have lessened... his clonus has increased dramatically.

Initially, his clonus can look 'and feel' if you are sitting next to him... like it MAY develop into a 'real seizure'.
The couch 'vibrates' as he shakes.

Sometimes it is his arm and leg together... sometimes either one.
ALWAYS down his LEFT side only... which is is 'weak' stroke side.

He sometimes swears... and says it's painfull ..... thankfully he soon forgets the pain....
Sometimes his head will shake along with his arm/leg.

Mostly, the shaking/clonus occurs when he is sat down... either in the lounge.... or at the table in kitchen.

It can and mostly lasts about 2 - 3 minutes... which to some may not seem that long... but to me it seems a lifetime..... as I am waiting to see if it 'develops' into a seizure.

It can be scary, and alarm you, if you are not expecting it.

When he is in bed at night... his clonus can last slightly longer.
I'm always awake INSTANTLY as he has had severall BAD nocturnal seizures.

I understrand how you must be feeling.

The clonus CAN happen more frequently if he is tired, or if we have been up several times in the night.

It may be worth looking at the drugs mum is on, as they can sometimes have a tremor like side effect...
Chat to you freindly pharmacist or practice nurse.
They might be able to offer some advice.

I spoke to my husbands Epilepsy Nurse Specialist... and she does not seem that worried at the sudden increase in clonus activity.

When he has had a bad day of shaking/clonus he is ALWAYS exhausted.... more so than usuall.... and that is saying something...!!!

He says that he ...
"Feels like he has been run over..."......

The more he has had clonus... the more HUNGRY he is...!!!
Not just a wee bit hungry.... BUT starving ... as though he has not eaten in days!!

PM me if you think I may be able to help.

Take Care.



Registered User
Nov 28, 2005
I cannot believe this thread has cropped up. I have been researching David's one off period of 'shakes'. It lasted around 10 mins. in middle of night and he was more exhausted than normal the following day or two. I did not know it was called clonus nor that it related to Alzheimers (or does it?). I had been wondering whether it was due to his myalgia problems or whether it was / a stroke etc etc.
I cannot help you, Happiness (what a lovely name) - but I am so glad you posted this one Beckyjan


Registered User
Oct 15, 2005
Hi Happiness, Welcome to TP
My Mum gets 'the shakes' but this appears to be connected with cold hands. It happens late afternoon/early evening and her teeth chatter as though she's really cold, this is virtually every day. Dad & I have put this down to a possible side effect of medication. We usually wrap her in a fleece and give her a warmed wheat bag for her hands, this calms things down although I don't know whether it's the physical act of doing this or the mental suggestion to her as sometimes she will be OK again after a minute or so of doing this. Who knows? As long as it works and she's comfortable...............


Registered User
Feb 26, 2006
Hi Happiness

Mary has suffered from the shakes for some time now. Within the past two weeks the anxieties she suffered from have ceased and as a consequence she was taken of pericyazine and the shakes are almost non existant.