You’ve most likely experienced myalgia even if you don’t know the term. “Myalgia” is the general term used for muscle pain that’s triggered by a wide variety of causes. Every muscle ache you’ve experienced from working out, playing outdoor games, or being bruised all relates to myalgia.

As a symptom, myalgia can be classified as short-term or long-term. Short-term myalgia can be a result of muscle cramps, muscle overexertion, and pulled muscles. Long-term myalgia involves a chronic condition that’s definitely more harmful than simple muscle pain because it may affect tendons, ligaments, connective tissues, bones, and even various body organs.

Symptoms sometimes begin after a physical trauma, surgery, infection or significant psychological stress. In other cases, symptoms gradually accumulate over time with no single triggering event.

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