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"Weakness in arms and upper body as well as dry mouth.What could be the cause?"

ZocdocAnswersWeakness in arms and upper body as well as dry mouth.What could be the cause?


There are several issues I have begun dealing with recently. The first is a sharp decline in upper body strength and endurance. I have woken up with soreness in both arms for several days. I was unable to finish my recent workout. I've tested the number of consecutive pushups I was capable of, and it was a third of my normal number. Secondly, I've been waking up with a very dry mouth on a daily basis, which is unusual for me. I increased my water consumption for several days, (I drank 1 1/2 gallon yesterday), but it has had no effect. Today I've decreased my water intake and increased my electrolyte intake to see if that might adress a possible electrolyte imbalance. I've yet to observe improvement. I also seem to notice increased weight loss during the last week. I've been eating, and don't believe this is a result of decreased caloric intake. Thanks.


Thanks for the question. It's hard to say exactly what is happening with symptoms that have just started in the last few days, so it is important to speak with your doctor. While there is a chance that this could be something serious that requires urgent medical attention, there is a chance, perhaps a greater chance, that this is something simple that will resolve itself. For example, most of us, when we start to come down with a viral illness or another infection, will start to have some weakness. Even conditions as simple as an upper respiratory tract infection will require large amounts of energy from the body to be able to mount the immune response necessary to help you get better. A dry mouth could be a sign of something like this as well. Likewise, sleep deprivation, fatigue, and other common factors can play a role. If you have had none of these common causes, then it is good to consider other possibilities. Some of these include conditions that cause generalized fatigue such as diabetes, anemia, etc. Others are more localized, and generally tend to affect a specific body part. Without more information and a physical exam, it will be hard to help further. Please speak with your doctor.

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