Characterized by aches, numbness, tingling, burning, or weakness, leg pain quite often is not caused by a problem in the leg or foot, but rather by a condition in the lower back. In fact, with many low back problems, there is actually little or no low back pain.
Compression or pressure on any of the nerve roots in the low back can cause pain, numbness, or weakness along the different nerves as they travel down through the leg and into the foot. Because the sciatic nerve is commonly affected, leg pain and related symptoms are often generally referred to as sciatica, although medical professionals prefer the term radiculopathy.
How do you describe leg pain?
- Have a leg injury with a deep cut or exposed bone or tendon.
- Are unable to walk or put weight on your leg.
- Have pain, swelling, redness, or warmth in your calf.
- Hear a popping or grinding sound at the time of a leg injury.
Muscle strains, tendonitis, and shin splints
Injuries to the muscles, such as muscle strains when muscle fibers tear, are a common cause of leg pain. The muscles in the leg commonly affected are the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves. Sports injuries are a common cause of muscle injuries.
- Swelling. This can happen in the exact spot where the blood clot forms or your entire leg or arm could puff up.
- Change in color. You might notice that your arm or leg takes on a red or blue tinge, or gets or itchy.
- Pain. …
- Warm skin. …
- Trouble breathing. …
- Lower leg cramp. …
- Pitting edema. …
- Swollen, painful veins.
- Ice the area in the early stages of recovery in order to reduce inflammation.
- Use heat (hot baths, use of a heating pad) to increase blood flow to the area (which speeds up healing)
- Get a massage, which also will increase blood flow to the area.
- Lavender oil. Lavender is prized for its ability to calm and relax. …
- Eucalyptus oil. Eucalyptus has a cooling effect on muscles and reduces pain and inflammation.
- Roman and German chamomile oils. Chamomile oils can help with pain and inflammation. …
- Rosemary oil. …
- Yarrow oil.
Most leg pain results from wear and tear, overuse, or injuries in joints or bones or in muscles, ligaments, tendons, or other soft tissues. Some types of leg pain can be traced to problems in your lower spine. Leg pain can also be caused by blood clots, varicose veins, or poor circulation.
Some common causes of leg pain include:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Achilles tendon rupture
- ACL injury (tearing of the anterior cruciate ligament in your knee)
- Ankylosing spondylitis
- Baker’s cyst
- Bone cancer
- Broken leg
- Bursitis (joint inflammation)
- Chronic exertional compartment syndrome
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) (DVT)
- Gout (arthritis related to excess uric acid)
- Growing pains
- Growth plate fractures
- Hamstring injury
- Herniated disk
- Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (formerly known as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis)
- Knee bursitis (inflammation of fluid-filled sacs in the knee joint)
- Legg-Calve-Perthes disease
- Meralgia paresthetica
- Muscle cramp
- Muscle strain
- Night leg cramps
- Osgood-Schlatter disease
- Osteoarthritis (disease-causing the breakdown of joints)
- Osteochondritis dissecans
- Osteomyelitis (a bone infection)
- Paget’s disease of bone
- Patellar tendinitis
- Patellofemoral pain syndrome
- Peripheral artery disease (PAD)
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Posterior cruciate ligament injury
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Reactive arthritis
- Rheumatoid arthritis (inflammatory joint disease)
- Septic arthritis
- Shin splints
- Spinal stenosis
- Stress fractures
- Thrombophlebitis (a blood clot that usually occurs in the leg)
- Torn meniscus
- Varicose veins
Is leg pain at night often interrupting your sleep? It could be more than a normal sign of getting older. Pain in your legs and feet at night, or when trying to sleep, is often a symptom of peripheral artery disease (PAD).
Peripheral artery disease leg pain can occur anywhere in your leg, but the most common places to feel pain are in the muscles of your calf, thigh, or buttocks. The pain can range from mild to so severe you can barely walk a very short distance. PAD is a progressive disease. For some people, the pain only occurs during the daytime. Others have pain when resting or at night.
The leg pain or muscle cramping caused by PAD is known as claudication. Symptoms of claudication can be triggered by activity, especially walking or climbing stairs. However, once you stop and rest for a few minutes, it’s not uncommon for the pain to subside.
Nighttime leg pain could be a sign of the worst form of PAD – critical limb ischemia (CLI). With CLI, the pain attacks in your legs or feet can persist for minutes to hours. Leg pain at night can be a sign of a serious condition, and only a healthcare professional can diagnose you with PAD.
Peripheral Artery Disease is a circulatory disease in which blocked arteries reduce blood flow to the extremities, most commonly, the legs and feet. PAD is a relatively common condition – in fact, an estimated 8.5 million people, and nearly 15% of people over the age of 70, in the United States have been diagnosed with it.
PAD is caused by atherosclerosis, or of the arteries. Hardening of the arteries is a condition that causes both coronary artery disease, which can lead to heart attacks, and PAD, which, if severe enough, can lead to amputation of a limb, or even death.2 And like coronary artery disease, PAD is a serious condition.
Trigger Point Leg Pain
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Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.
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