The origin of femoral nerve is in lumbar plexus, it extends in the front portion of the thigh supplying the thigh muscles, and its cutaneous branch also supplies the thigh skin. The nerve further moves down and supplies the calf region. Femoral nerve pain is caused when the femoral nerve is injured due to several causes which we will discuss further.
Pain caused by cutaneous branch of femoral nerve needs a special mention due to its peculiar pain, i.e. burning sensation in front of the thigh. Like sciatic nerve pain, femoral nerve pain can also disturb the quality of your life.The main function of femoral nerve is to provide sensation in front region of your thigh and lower part of leg, where it runs its course. It also helps to straighten the leg as it supplies the muscles of thigh.
Symptoms Of Femoral Nerve Pain
Mononeuropathy is the term referred when a single nerve group is involved, usually the reason is local. However, single nerve damage in systemic diseases is also known to occur in many cases.
Let us know femoral nerve pain symptoms:
- Burning pain in front of the thigh.
- Pain in the groin area, further extending down to the lower leg while extending the leg. Pain may be stabbing or shooting.
- Aggravation of pain when a person attempts to walk, or while climbing stairs.
- Pain may increase in certain position and sometimes it is continuously felt without finding any relief from changing different positions.
- There is wasting of quadriceps muscles due to femoral nerve pain which can affect the quality of life.
Here we need to mention a specific condition called meralgia parasthetica. It is the condition that occurs when a cutaneous branch of the femoral nerve is affected. There are some peculiar symptoms such as:
- Burning pain in front region of the thigh.
- Burning pain is aggravated after wearing tight fitting clothes and belts.
- Thigh is sensitive to touch.
- Aggravation of femoral nerve pain when a person stands for long time or while walking.
Causes Of Pain In Femoral Nerve
The nerve pain is due to direct trauma to the nerve, or it can be due to compression of the nerve or prolonged pressure to the nerve.
The damage to the femoral nerve is the main cause in any form of femoral nerve pain.
- Direct femoral nerve injury as seen in femoral bone fracture.
- A sharp stab wound can also be a reason for femoral nerve pain.
- Compression due to a tumor nearby the nerve can cause femoral nerve pain.
- Certain procedures such as catheterization through femoral artery while performing angiography can damage the femoral nerve adjacent to the artery.
- Examination or gynecological procedures where lithotomy position is required can cause pain in the front region of thigh and lower leg later on. This is due to stretching of the femoral nerve.
- Psoas abscess.
- Hematoma in the region of psoas muscle can cause pain in the front of thigh due to irritation of the femoral nerve.
- Wearing tight fitting clothes can compress the cutaneous branch of the nerve.
Treatment For Femoral Nerve Pain Relief
The treatment is aimed to increase the mobility and reduce the pain felt due to femoral nerve injury.
- On many occasions femoral nerve pain heels on its own and may not require any specific treatment.
- If the pain is intolerable, the person needs to be relieved from the agony and suffering. Certain pain relievers prescribed by the doctor may help in these cases.
- Drainage of abscess or hematoma in the psoas muscle can help to alleviate the pain.
- If tumor is the cause of femoral nerve damage resulting in severe femoral nerve pain, removal of tumor is needed to alleviate the symptom.
- Physiotherapy, massage etc. may also help in certain conditions.
- Wearing loose fitting clothes relieves the condition meralgia parasthetica.