What Is a Pinched Nerve in Leg?
It is a condition in which one or more nerves in the leg get compressed due to pressure from adjacent muscles and tissues. It is a common health syndrome affecting many people around the world.
What Causes Pinched Nerve in Leg?
This syndrome is caused by a number of factors. Some of the main Pinched Nerve in Leg causes involves
Walking or running constantly over a long distance for a long period of time puts leg muscles and tissues under excessive stress. This leads to compression of nerves and pinched nerve in hip and leg.
Injury to the leg may also cause damage of the leg nerves. This is another of the causes of Pinched Nerve in Leg.
Pinched Nerve in Leg during pregnancy is a common phenomenon. This happens due to the added weight of the enlarging uterus that exerts pressure over the spine. It may also occur if the growing uterus in the pelvic area presses against one or more nerves.
Obese people are highly susceptible to having this condition. Excessive body weight may lead to many problems in the muscles and tissues of the body.
Poor posture while sitting or sleeping can also give rise to this health syndrome. Bad posture puts tissues and muscles under stress which leads to compression of nerves.
Pinched Nerve in Leg Symptoms
If you have already had this condition you must be aware what does a pinched nerve feel like in your leg? For the uninitiated, here is information on some of the main symptoms of Pinched Nerve in leg:
Pain is among the most common symptoms of a pinched nerve in leg. There is usually a mild pain in the leg in the early stages. It gradually goes worse and becomes severe in the later period of the condition. The pinched nerve pain in leg radiates from the region where the affected nerve is located. If it is situated in the hip, the pain may run down the knee, ankle and foot. The migration of pinched nerve leg pain actually depends on which nerve has got pinched.
In some cases you may also have a pinched nerve in back causing leg pain.
Pain is accompanied by a burning sensation in most affected individuals. This can increase with over-activity of the affected leg such as walking or running for a long period of time.
The condition also gives rise to a tingling feeling in the affected area of the leg. This may later extend down the leg to the ankle and foot.
There can also be involuntary muscular spasms in the leg where the nerve has become pinched. There are twitches in the leg from time to time.
There may also be a numb sensation in the leg which can make you feel as if the limb has fallen asleep. Pinched nerve leg numbness makes the leg feel heavy to move. It becomes difficult to walk with a pinched nerve leg.
A pinched nerve also gives rise to muscular weakness in the leg. The fatigue is mild in the initial days but may affect the entire leg afterwards. Weakness arises as the surrounding muscles obstruct the pathway of the nerve. A blocked nerve prevents blood and nutrients from reaching the muscles. This makes walking or standing extremely difficult for the suffering person.
Pinched Nerve in the Leg Treatment
Read on to know how to treat pinched nerve in leg by medical means.
Rest is the first pinched nerve in leg treatment for a person. This involves avoiding or keeping to a minimum all activities that put stress on the affected leg such as walking or running.
Medicines are very important in the treatment for pinched nerve in leg. This includes use of analgesics (painkillers) and anti-inflammatory medicines such as Ibuprofen and Naproxen. If the pain is too severe, corticosteroid injections may be required for pinched nerve in leg cure.
It involves a system of exercises such as stretching and flexing and massages that can relax the muscles and reduce the pressure that they exert over the affected nerve. It is to be remembered that treatment never directly addresses the pinched nerve and focuses on treating the surrounding the muscles and tissues that act as the cause of the disorder.
In case of a severe pinched leg nerve splints and braces may be required to provide support to muscles and tissues adjacent to the affected nerve and protect them from further damage.
Pinched Nerve in Leg Surgery
If all other methods of treatment fail to improve the condition even after a few weeks, surgery may be used as a last option. Surgery of a pinched nerve has a high rate of success but can give rise to certain side effects. This is the reason why it is used only when all other cures have failed to bring about an improvement.
Surgery is useful especially when bone spurs or spinal misalignment is responsible for the condition. The aim of surgery in such cases is to remove bone spurs and correct abnormal spinal alignment. In some cases, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is found to be responsible for nerve compression. A Carpal Tunnel Surgery needs to be carried out to remove adjacent muscles and tissues in such cases and provide relief to the affected nerve.
Pinched Nerve in Leg Home Remedy
Pinched nerve in leg home treatment can be done in the following ways
Avoiding repetitive injury
Using the affected leg over and over again for a long time can repeatedly put the nerve under stress. This can damage the nerve even more and result in further complications.
Soak a clean washcloth with warm water. Wring it to remove the extra water. Place the moist warm cloth over the affected nerve to apply heat. Heat application reduces inflammation and pain in the area. It is a trusted pinched nerve in leg remedy.
Wrap ice cubes in a thin piece of clean washcloth and apply it over the impacted nerve for ten to fifteen minutes after every three hours. Applying cold will bring down pain and also provide relief from swelling.
The condition goes away in a few days with effective treatment and home remedies. If the syndrome fails to improve even after a week, it may be a result of bone spurs or Herniated disc. Professional medical care is required to provide pinched nerve in leg relief in such cases.