Femoral nerve numbness and hip arthritis

by Greg
(Malibu, CA USA)


I have numbness in my right inner quadricep and down the inner tibia/calf to the ankle. I have been diagnosed with bone on bone osteoarthritis in both of my hips and degenerative disc disease in my lumbar spine. Is there anyway to tell if this numbness is being caused by the arthritis in my hip, which might be relieved by total hip replacement surgery, or from the degenerated discs in my lumbar spine, in which case hip replacement surgery would not relieve it?

Hello Greg,
It's most unlikely that hip arthritis would cause numbness in the femoral nerve distribution.

If you stand on your right leg, and bend the knee, does it give? Has the knee jerk reflex been affected? Is the femoral nerve stretch positive? These are all key questions in distinguishing between two different conditions affecting the same area. They feed off each other, the hip making you limp and increasing the stress on the lumbar spine.

If you bend slowly backwards, and then to the side, do you get pain in the leg? In the back? The L3 nerve root is probably the one affected.

Look for our Femoral nerve damage page using the Search function at C-H.

Start some gentle exercises for the hip and back. Methinks it's time to start looking for an experienced, thorough chiropractor. You may be able to escape surgery.

I hope this contributes.

Dr B

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