Femoral and inguinal nerve pain after laminectomy

by Donald
(West Branch, Iowa)

I had a surgical laminectomy on the 2nd lumbar and am now experiencing pain in the right groin and inner thigh. I've been checked for kidney stones, hernias, and prostate problems with no success and wonder if it may be an undesirable result of the surgery. I had the surgery due to a fall on the ice in Dec.,one year ago. I had to wait until July to get the surgery. At that time I had a 2nd lumbar ridiculopathy.

Hello Donald,
What's the difference between the thigh pain you are experiencing now, and before the surgery? Is it now in the groin? Both nerve roots supply that general area.

Other nerves also supply the groin, particularly the superior cluneal nerves, and yes, I suppose it's possible they could have been injured in a laminectomy; you would likely also then have buttock pain.

Any back pain? If you bend slowly forwards, backwards and then to the side, do you get lower back pain, and is there any immediate referral to the leg?

Test the strength of the quadriceps muscle by gently hopping on first the left leg and then the naughty leg. Is it giving at the knee?

Prick you leg with a pin. Is there a difference right and left?

Lie on your belly with the knees bent at 90*. Ask your spouse to first gently lift the left knee (and whole leg) and compare the tightness and pain in the front of the thigh when she lifts the right knee.

Have you had another MRI, Donald. Has the original lesion been fixed?

The real question in all this is where do you go now? I would start with the Maignes syndrome exercises which you can find at our site using the search function. Place your hands under your back whilst doing pelvic tilts and rock the T12, L1, L2 area particularly, but go right up and down the lumbar spine. Start gently. Do them for a month, and see if there's any change.

It's now nearly six months post surgery, and an experienced and thorough chiropractor is certainly an option now; we use certain techniques that are less vigorous. Also that sacroiliac joint needs to be checked because it can cause groin pain, but not likely radiating down the inner thigh.

I hope this contributes some. Let me know in a month how you are getting on.

Dr B

Comments for Femoral and inguinal nerve pain after laminectomy

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Aug 30, 2016
knee pain
by: Lulu

i had a laminectomy and screws put in my lower back, l4,l5, and s1 three weeks ago.

I am experiencing pain between my left groin and knee; more felt on the knee, and the same leg is slightly weak.

Hello Lulu,
It's a huge procedure you've had and there will always be some pain after the operation. Three weeks isn't long. Just be careful and do exactly what the surgeon said you could and shouldn't do.

Try an decide where the leg is feeling weak. Is the knee giving? Can you raise your big toe? Is lifting the heel difficult?

If these are new symptoms then you should discuss them with the neurosurgeon.

Just be careful; ask if you may sit, or should you be lying down some of the day.

Good luck, I hope it turns out well.

Dr B

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Femoral nerve.

Did you find this page useful? Then perhaps forward it to a suffering friend. Better still, Tweet or Face Book it.

Interesting challenges of the day

1. Mr S is a 76 year old man with neck pain of some 9 months duration. Luckily, most of the discomfort is upper cervical which is only rarely arthritic; his lower cervical spine is a degenerative mess that I have left alone. After seven treatments his pain and stiffness is 50 percent better, and he is happy in the circumstances. He can sleep through the night now and that makes a huge difference.

2. Mr P is 32 year old man with very severe lower back pain radiating to the big toe which is 30 percent numb. He had an episode three weeks ago, took anti-inflammatories and was soon better as is typical of the medial disc herniation. But before it healed, after a trivia it came roaring back, much worse. The characteristic crossed sign was evident; sitting in a chair, straightening the right leg provoked severe left back pain and tingling in the leg. He is doing well.

3. Severe lower back pain is scary; just ask Mrs P. Just watching her get out of the car I she was in trouble; she had a slipped disc at L4 making her lean towards the opposite side; luckily she had no pain in the leg. Despite family pressure that this was far too severe for a chiropractor, she persevered. Within five days she was standing upright, and after two weeks almost pain-free. 

Despite a hectic job, she wisely took my advice and stayed home for what I call exercising bed rest.

4. Mr S has had lower back, groin and back of thigh and calf pain for fourth months.

He has a pincer deformity in the hip causing the stabs in the groin, and a degenerative facet causing the sciatica. Both are responding well to chiropractic and he is well pleased; sixty-five percent better after three treatments.

5. Mr T is a wise man; he has taken a warning TIA seriously and has lost 15 pounds, and has at least as much again to lose. A change to a low starch diet and half hour daily stroll has made the difference; but the walking is making his foot and back miserable. The expensive orthotic is hopeless; luckily his hips and back are fine, but he needs a simple heel lift; he has a short leg.

6. I too have had serious lower back issues, luckily fixed by my own chiropractor; so I too have to do my exercises, take care when lifting supers full of honey, gardening and using the chainsaw. Regaining the function of your spine is just as important as the pain.

7. My own granddaughter, only 7 is hypermobile giving her pelvic, knee and ankle issues. X-rays show a mildly dysplastic hip. Years ago we would have called it growing pains. She too regularly needs chiropractic care and luckily responds well. Increased range of motion is more difficult than too stiff in my opinion. Our care is for kids too.

8. This 65-year old lady is a serious gardener; every day she is bending, lifting and digging for 2 to 3 hours a day. It regularly catches her in the sacroiliac joint, so she has a treatment once a month that sorts it out. She does her lower back exercises faithfully.

9. This 88-year old lady is an inspiration; every day she is busy in the community. With a nasty scoliosis she manages very well with a chiropractic adjustment every six weeks and exercises faithfully done. 

10. Mr X is a 71-year old retired man who wants to continue with maintenance care every six to eight weeks; he had suffered from two years of lower back pain when he first came a few months ago. He has no discomfort now after 8 chiropractic treatments, but is aware that danger lurks.

11. Mrs C has been having severe headaches, and taking a lot of analgesics. It is a non-complicated upper cervical facet syndrome, and she is doing well.

12. Mr D is a 38-year old year man with chronic shoulder pain after a rotator cuff tear playing cricket. It responded well to treatment, but he knows he must do his exercises every day; for two years he could not sleep on that shoulder.

13. Mr D, a 71-year old man, has a severe ache in the shoulder and midback since working above his head. Trapped nerve tests are negative but he has advanced degenerative joints of Luschka; after just two treatments he is 50 percent better. Can we reach 90?

And so the day goes; chiropractors should not be treating the elderly most medical sites state but that is so much bunkum.

Do you have a problem that is not getting better?

Are you looking for a different slant on your pain?

Do you want to pose a question?

Interesting questions from visitors

CLS writes:

Greetings, Dr B.

You helped me quite some time back with a soothing and professional response which turned out to be exactly correct. I now consult a local chiropractor. You write a superb newsletter, too.

Your own unresolved problem. Pose a question

Knowing that up to 70 percent of the time the correct diagnosis is made with no examination, no special tests, no xrays, but just from the history, there is a fair chance I can add some insight to your unresolved problem. But at least 30% of the time, I may be quite wrong. Give plenty of detail if you want a sensible reply.

You visited this chiropractic help site no doubt because you have a problem that is not resolving and want to know more about what a DC does.

The quickest and most interesting way is to read one of my eBooks of anecdotes. Described by a reader as gems, both funny and healthful from the life and work of a chiropractor, you will love them. Priced right at $2.99, though Kindle fiddles the amount without telling me.