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Thigh Feels Numb to Touch – Is It Meralgia Paresthetica?
Meralgia paresthetica is a condition that causes numbness, pain, or a burning feeling in your outer thigh. You may also hear it called Bernhardt-Roth syndrome. It happens when there’s too much pressure on or damage to one of the nerves in your leg.
In many cases, there are simple ways to treat the condition, such as using looser clothing. Some people with more severe meralgia paresthetica may need medication or surgery.
With the right treatment and adequate time to recuperate, you can relieve your symptoms and feel much better.
Common Symptoms Meralgia Paresthetica
Normally, you’ll see the indication of meralgia paresthetica only on one side of your body. You might feel:
- Pain, tingling, numbness, or burning in the beyond your thigh
- Sensitivity to light touch rather than to firm pressure
- High level of sensitivity to heat
Your symptoms may be moderate at first, however as the condition gets worse, you may feel sharper, shooting pain. It may go away and return for no clear factor.
What Causes Thigh Feels Numb to Touch
Nerves take a trip throughout your body, carrying messages to and from your brain. A particular set of nerves, called the sensory nerves, collect and send signals to your brain about your skin, muscles, and other tissues.
If you have meralgia paresthetica, a large sensory nerve in your outer thigh doesn’t have enough space to travel through your hip bone or joints. This may be due to swelling, injury, or increased pressure in this area.
A great deal of things can squeeze or damage the nerve, consisting of:
- Weight gain and weight problems
- Tight clothes
- Injury, such as trauma from a seatbelt during an auto accident
- A disease that can damage the nerves, like diabetes
- Repeated motions that could irritate the nerve, such as specific leg movements
- Standing or walking for a long time
Your doctor will give you a physical examination and ask about your symptoms and your case history– particularly about any current injuries or surgeries. The doctor will touch your leg to discover the afflicted area.
The doctor may also do some tests, consisting of:
- Imaging tests of your leg and hip, such as X-rays or MRI.
- Electromyography (EMG). Your doctor will put sensors on your leg. The sensors have small needles, which go into your muscle. They’re connected by wires to a maker that can determine the electricity in your muscles and nerves. Your doctor will ask you to slowly flex and unwind your leg so the machine can tape-record the activity.
- Nerve conduction study. This test measures how quick electrical signals take a trip through your nerves. Generally, your doctor will put two sensors on the skin over the nerve in your thigh, one to provide a little electrical shock and the other to record the activity.
It can be hard to tell the difference between meralgia paresthetica and other back, hip, or groin conditions. Be patient as you deal with your doctor to discover the right diagnosis.
Treatment for Meralgia Paresthetica
The objective of treatment is to ease the pressure on your nerve. The kind of therapy you get depends on the cause of your condition.
For mild cases, your doctor might suggest:
- Heat, ice, or taking over-the-counter painkiller like aspirin, acetaminophen, naproxen, or ibuprofen for a few days
- Weight loss
- Wearing loose-fitting clothes, especially around your upper front hip
- Physical therapy for a hip injury or to strengthen your leg muscles or abs
If your condition is more severe, you might require:
- A corticosteroid shot to decrease swelling.
- Surgery to ease pressure on the nerve. Medical professionals generally advise an operation just when no other treatment assists.
It can spend some time for your pain to go away. Some people will still feel numbness after treatment. In most cases, though, you should have the ability to recover within 4 to 6 weeks.