Sciatica AND Meralgia Paraesthetica..maybe

by donna

I am overweight, sedentary, female, age 56. I had two 'traumas', involving my left leg, one falling off an embankment, one running on a treadmill. Not immediately, but soon after, I noticed occasional pain in my left groin and extreme tenderness down the outside of my leg and knee.

Also, the muscle on top of my thigh became raised and rigid. It does not hurt. I have actually had this for several years. A 'flare-up' of pain was only occasional, and my walking was not affected, at all. Over the past year, with more weight gain, I noticed pain in my butt and down the back of my leg all the way to my foot. This is typical sciatica

Now my knee and calf on the INSIDE of my leg are very tender. This is either a femoral nerve problem, or to do with the hip. My chiropractor says sciatica, which I agree with...but, also suggested Meralgia P. because of the groin/outer thigh pain. Could I have BOTH? Certainly, but you said higher up INSIDE of your thigh. Or is it both inner and outide of the thigh?

Basically, my entire leg hurts. AND my lower back. Slightly pressing my lower back sends me thru the roof. I have no numbness or tingling, as suggested in everything I've read. The greatest pain in my leg as of now, is the back of my thigh, like maybe a tight hamstring. This is probably the sciatica.

I recently started the McKenzie technique, which actually feels good and seems to help, some. Keep it up.

I realize that weight loss may fix the whole issue, but it will take months for me to lose and I would like to be in less pain, in the meantime. I would appreciate your input. I would prefer to do my own physical therapy, at home, so, I will appreciate any techniques/stretches/exercises that you can recommend.

Hello Donna,
Let's be sure that the pain on the inside of your thigh is not a hip problem. Lie on your back and pull your knee to your chest, and then towards the opposite shoulder, and then drop it into the lotus position. Compare with the other hip. Is it very stiff and sore in the groin, inner thigh, side of the hip?

Sitting, run your finger with a little oil from the ASIS (google it), through the groin and down the inner thigh. Is it very tender?

Nobody can help you with your weight, Donna, but you yourself. Quite soon you are going to feel trapped in a body that just don't allow you to do the things you want to do, plus a lot of pain. The safest and best way to get it off is cut back very hard on carbs. No white rice, white flour products, much less potato, no sugar. Instead, plenty of fruit and salad, legumes like garbanzo beans (make hummus). Do it; the victory is won between the ears. Once the decision is made, and you're tired of so much pain and disability, it's really not that difficult to do.

See also our free weight loss programs. There's a big emphasis on anti inflammatory foods that you need to eat on a daily basis; so much safer than pills.

There are lots of lower back exercises at chiropractic help. Ask your chiropractor to help you choose them. Also go through with him what you find from the above tests.

I hope this contributes.

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've left alone. After seven treatments his pain and stiffness is 50 percent better, and he's 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's 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 painfree. 

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's well pleased; sixty five percent better after three treatments.

5. Mr T is a wise man; he's 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 walk 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.

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. Xrays 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 year 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's a non complicated upper cervical facet syndrome, and she's doing well.

12. Mr D is a 38 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 couldn't 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 shouldn't be treating the elderly most medical sites state but that's so much bunkum.

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