femoral nerve causing thigh and lower back pain

by lynette
(collinsville, il)

I am 70 years old with lower back pain and arthritis. Recently I began having severe quad pain and pain in the buttocks to the point that I can't walk very far or long. My knees both are bad, but I was used to that pain and hoping that PRP might help.

After being treated at the chiropractor today, he mentioned that the spot I was having a lot of pain it that I showed him was the S-1.

Within 2 hours of the treatment my quads were aching again so I searched the internet and found your wonderful site with detailed information. I am sure that my femoral nerve is being pinched.

When I am at yoga class and bringing my feet up into the pose of a baby or pulling my legs to my chest the front of the thighs don't hurt. Also the lower back and buttocks seem better.

Many years ago I went to a chiropractor (now retired) who used traction which was the only thing that helped my neck after severe whiplash resulting from a carnival ride. Now none of the chiropractors around my area use traction.

My internist blamed "aging" and arthritis, but this happened suddenly. It even hurts in bed, and I am wondering if much of my knee pain could come from my lower back and femoral nerve rather than the actual knees.

Hello Lynette,
Because knee, hip, sacroiliac and lumbar conditions all can cause quad pain only a very careful and thorough examination can determine what's what in the zoo; and of course you can have more than one of these contributing to your discomfort and disability.

S1 can certainly cause lower back pain, and radiation to the leg, but not the quad. So your lumbosacral pain may be quite unrelated to the thigh pain.

It's great you are doing yoga exercises; take them home and do them every morning; gently; they won't have a place for you in the team to go to the Winter Olympics!

Also, remember that hyperextension exercises like the cobra can certainly provoke lower back and quadriceps pain; just treating a patient who has that after yoga.

Ask your chiropractor for other gentle lower back exercises; I recommend doing them every morning before getting out of bed. I do them myself being not much younger than you; prevention is better than a cure.

I hope this contributes.

Dr B

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Apr 14, 2017
femoral nerve causing thigh and lower back pain
by: Don

Ok, I'm no chiro, but have been doing chiro for over 40 years.
Wherever it came, the pain definitely was not FROM the knees, but IN the knees, and coming from somewhere above the knees, and the Chiro fixed it for me.

Apr 11, 2017
femoral nerve causing thigh and lower back pain
by: Don

Regarding your comment...................and I am wondering if much of my knee pain could come from my lower back ........ rather than the actual knees.

That's the exact problem I had while on the job, many years ago.

One particular operation I had to perform bothered my lower back but the pain manifested itself in my knees. It didn't take the chiropractor long to alleviate the problem.

Hello Don,
It's possible but perhaps more likely coming from the hip; if you lie on your back and pull the knee to the chest, is it inordinately stiff or painful in the groin?

Dr B

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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.

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