Numbness in leg

by Isabella
(Indianapolis, Indiana, USA)

Numbness in the leg must be precisely located.

Today I noticed my right shin from the bottom of my knee cap to about my ankle suddenly become numb and gradually weaken. I do not believe it is shin splints because I have experienced shin splints before, and I have no feeling at all. Spinal stenosis runs in my family, but I have never been checked for it. My shin has currently been numb and week for 5 hours. Do you have any idea what would cause this?

Hello Isabella,
Numbness in the leg is distressing so don't feel you're being a wimp; however any odd symptom, especially as we get older shouldn't generally be taken too seriously. These things usually pass of their own accord.

You have described the location well; the inner shin, I take it. It belongs to the L4 dermatome. Do you have low back pain, or a history of LBP? Most important, if you bend forwards, backwards, or to the side, does it provoke the numbness in your shin?

You mention weakness; check out our leg pain weakness page; try to isolate which muscle feels weak.

If the symptoms continue, and particularly if any of the above are positive then you should contact your local chiropractor. Meantime perhaps start some gentle lower back exercises.

Have you read any of Isabella Allende's books? They are wonderful.

Let me know if any of the above are positive.

I hope this contributes.

Dr B

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