July 30, 2016

Leg Pain

MedicineNet - Leg Pain

Leg Pain Symptoms & Signs

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Symptoms & Signs

Pain in the legs can occur as a result of conditions that affect bones, joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments, blood vessels, nerves, or skin. Leg pain can occur in the foot, ankle, knee, behind the knee, thigh, down the back of the leg, or in any part of the leg. It can occur at night, while lying down, or while running or exercising, depending upon the cause. Typically, the leg pain is a result of tissue inflammation that is caused by injury or disease. Either injury or chronic disease can cause inflammation to any of the tissues of the leg and lead to leg pain. Since the leg contains a number of different structures and tissue types, a wide variety of conditions and injuries can cause leg pain. Depending on the cause of the pain, other symptoms, like weakness, numbness, throbbing, cramps, aching, or a tingling sensation, may accompany leg pain. Diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage from diabetes) is a common cause of tingling, burning, and numbness in the legs that can at times be painful. For diagnostic and therapeutic purposes, it is important to differentiate the exact type and location of any pain in the legs. Peripheral artery disease can cause claudication, or pain that occurs in the legs usually when walking or exercising. Blood clots (deep vein thrombosis) can be another cause of leg pain. Pain in the knee and ankle joints of the leg is common with the arthritis conditions. The pain of sciatica (from disc disease of the spine) may radiate down the leg and is another common cause of leg pain.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/9/2016

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REFERENCE:

Kasper, D., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Professional, 2015.

Causes of Leg Pain
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      • How many types of arthritis exist?
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      • What is the significance of the amount of body area burned?
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      • What are the types of Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease?
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      • What research is being done?
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      • Cuts, scrapes (abrasions), and puncture wounds facts
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      In This Article
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      • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) facts
      • What is deep vein thrombosis (DVT)?
      • What are the causes of deep vein thrombosis (DVT)?
      • What are the symptoms of deep vein thrombosis (DVT)?
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      • Surgery for deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
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      • What are the signs and symptoms of fatigue?
      • How is the cause of fatigue diagnosed?
      • What is the treatment for fatigue?
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      • What research is being done on Guillain-Barré syndrome?
      • Where can I get more information about Guillain-Barré syndrome?
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      • Hamstring injury facts
      • What are the hamstrings?
      • What is the function of the hamstrings?
      • What causes hamstring injuries, and what are types of hamstring injuries?
      • What are risk factors for hamstring injury?
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      • What specialties of doctors treat hamstring injuries?
      • How do health-care professionals diagnose hamstring injuries?
      • What are home remedies for hamstring injury?
      • What is the treatment for hamstring injuries?
      • Is it possible to prevent a hamstring injury?
      • What is the prognosis for hamstring injuries?
      • Where can one find more information about hamstring injuries?
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      Herniated Disc Article
      • Herniated disc facts
      • How are the spine and its discs designed?
      • What is a herniated disc? What causes it?
      • What are symptoms of a herniated disc?
      • How do health-care professionals diagnose a herniated disc?
      • What is the treatment for a herniated disc?
      • What are home remedies for a herniated disc?
      • What exercises and stretches can be done for a herniated disc?
      • What kind of health-care professionals treat herniated discs?
      • What is the prognosis (outlook) for a herniated disc?
      • Is it possible to prevent a herniated disc?
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      In This Article
      Iliotibial Band Syndrome Article
      • Iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome facts
      • What is iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?
      • What causes iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?
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      • How do health-care professionals diagnose iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?
      • What is the treatment for iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?
      • What stretches and exercises are beneficial for iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?
      • What exercises should be avoided with iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?
      • Where can people find more information about iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?
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      Lumbar Spinal Stenosis Article
      • Lumbar spinal stenosis facts
      • What is the lumbar spine, and what is lumbar spinal stenosis?
      • What causes lumbar spinal stenosis?
      • What are risk factors for lumbar spinal stenosis?
      • What are lumbar spinal stenosis symptoms?
      • How do health-care professionals diagnose lumbar spinal stenosis?
      • What is the treatment for lumbar spinal stenosis?
      • Is it possible to prevent lumbar spinal stenosis?
      • What is the prognosis for lumbar spinal stenosis?
    • Lupus (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus or SLE) Systemic lupus erythematosus is a condition characterized by chronic inflammation of body tissues caused by autoimmune disease....learn more »
      In This Article
      Lupus (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus or SLE) Article
      • Systemic lupus erythematosus facts
      • What is systemic lupus erythematosus? What are the types of lupus?
      • What are risk factors and causes of systemic lupus erythematosus? Is lupus contagious? Is lupus hereditary?
      • What is drug-induced lupus?
      • What are lupus symptoms and signs?
      • How is systemic lupus erythematosus diagnosed?
      • What is the treatment for systemic lupus?
      • Is there a systemic lupus erythematosus diet?
      • How can a lupus patient help prevent disease activity (flares)?
      • How can systemic lupus erythematosus affect pregnancy or the newborn?
      • What specialties of doctors treat lupus?
      • What is the prognosis of lupus? What does the future hold for people with systemic lupus?
      • Where can one get more information about systemic lupus erythematosus?
    • Muscle Cramps Muscle cramps are involuntarily and forcibly contracted muscles that do not relax. Extremely common, any muscles that have...learn more »
    • Muscle Spasms Muscle spasms are involuntary muscle contractions that come on suddenly and are usually quite painful. Dehydration, doing...learn more »
    • Osgood-Schlatter Disease Osgood-Schlatter disease, a painful inflammation just below the knee but above the shin, typically affects adolescent boys....learn more »
      In This Article
      Osgood-Schlatter Disease Article
      • Osgood-Schlatter disease facts
      • What is Osgood-Schlatter disease?
      • What are symptoms of Osgood-Schlatter disease?
      • How is Osgood-Schlatter disease diagnosed?
      • What is the treatment and outlook for Osgood-Schlatter disease?
    • Osteoarthritis (OA) Osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis caused by inflammation, breakdown, and eventual loss of cartilage in the joints. Also...learn more »
      In This Article
      Osteoarthritis (OA) Article
      • Osteoarthritis facts
      • What is osteoarthritis?
      • What is the difference between osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis?
      • What causes osteoarthritis?
      • What are osteoarthritis symptoms and signs?
      • How do doctors diagnose osteoarthritis?
      • What is the treatment for osteoarthritis?
      • "If I have minimal or no symptoms with early signs of osteoarthritis, what should I do?"
      • What is the prognosis for patients with osteoarthritis?
      • Is it possible to prevent osteoarthritis?
      • What specialists treat osteoarthritis?
      • What does the future hold for osteoarthritis?
      • Where can people get more information about osteoarthritis?
    • Osteomyelitis Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone. Potential causes include injections around the bone, fractures that puncture the skin,...learn more »
      In This Article
      Osteomyelitis Article
      • Osteomyelitis facts
      • What is osteomyelitis?
      • What causes osteomyelitis?
      • What are osteomyelitis symptoms and signs?
      • How is osteomyelitis diagnosed?
      • What is the treatment for osteomyelitis?
      • What is the prognosis for osteomyelitis?
    • Peripheral Vascular Disease Peripheral vascular disease (PVD) refers to diseases of the blood vessels (arteries and veins) located outside the heart and...learn more »
      In This Article
      Peripheral Vascular Disease Article
      • Peripheral vascular disease facts
      • What is peripheral vascular disease?
      • What is atherosclerosis?
      • How does atherosclerosis cause disease?
      • What are potential complications of peripheral artery disease?
      • What are the other causes of peripheral vascular diseases?
      • Who is at risk for peripheral artery disease?
      • What are the symptoms and signs of peripheral artery disease?
      • How is peripheral artery disease diagnosed?
      • What are the treatments for peripheral artery disease?
      • Lifestyle changes
      • Supervised exercise
      • Peripheral vascular disease medications
      • Angioplasty for peripheral vascular disease
      • Surgery for peripheral vascular disease
    • Piriformis Syndrome Piriformis syndrome may develop if the piriformis muscle spasms and compresses the sciatic nerve. This causes buttock pain that...learn more »
      In This Article
      Piriformis Syndrome Article
      • Piriformis syndrome facts
      • What is piriformis syndrome?
      • What are causes and risk factors for piriformis syndrome?
      • What are piriformis syndrome symptoms and signs?
      • How do health-care professionals diagnose piriformis syndrome?
      • What are treatments and medications for piriformis syndrome?
      • Are there home remedies like stretches or exercises for piriformis syndrome?
      • What doctors or health professionals treat piriformis syndrome?
      • What is the prognosis of piriformis syndrome?
      • Is it possible to prevent piriformis syndrome?
    • Pseudogout Pseudogout, a form of arthritis, results when deposits of crystals collect in and around the joints. Symptoms of pseudogout...learn more »
      In This Article
      Pseudogout Article
      • Pseudogout facts
      • What is pseudogout?
      • What are causes of pseudogout?
      • What are risk factors for pseudogout?
      • What are pseudogout symptoms and signs?
      • How does a doctor diagnose pseudogout?
      • What are treatments for pseudogout?
      • What other conditions can accompany pseudogout?
      • Are there special circumstances that can promote attacks of pseudogout?
      • What are complications of pseudogout?
      • What is the prognosis of pseudogout?
      • Is it possible to prevent pseudogout?
      • What specialists treat pseudogout?
      • Where can people get more information about pseudogout?
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      In This Article
      Psoriasis Article
      • Psoriasis facts
      • What is psoriasis?
      • What are psoriasis causes and risk factors?
      • What are the different types of psoriasis?
      • Can psoriasis affect my joints?
      • Can psoriasis affect only my nails?
      • What are psoriasis symptoms and signs? What does psoriasis look like?
      • How do health-care professionals diagnose psoriasis?
      • Eczema vs. psoriasis
      • How many people have psoriasis?
      • Is psoriasis contagious?
      • Is there a cure for psoriasis?
      • Is psoriasis hereditary?
      • What kind of doctor treats psoriasis?
      • What is the treatment for psoriasis?
      • What creams, lotions, and home remedies are available for psoriasis?
      • Are psoriasis shampoos available?
      • What oral medications are available for psoriasis?
      • What injections or infusions are available for psoriasis?
      • Is there a psoriasis diet?
      • What about light therapy for psoriasis?
      • What is the long-term prognosis with psoriasis? What are complications of psoriasis?
      • Is it possible to prevent psoriasis?
      • What does the future hold for psoriasis?
      • Is there a national psoriasis support group?
      • Where can people get more information on psoriasis?
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      In This Article
      Quadriceps Injury Article
      • Quadriceps injury facts
      • What are the quadriceps?
      • What are the different types of quadriceps injuries?
      • What are causes and risk factors for a quadriceps injury?
      • What are symptoms and signs of a quadriceps injury?
      • What tests do health-care professionals use to diagnose a quadriceps injury?
      • What is the treatment for a quadriceps injury?
      • Are there home remedies for a quadriceps injury?
      • What is the recovery time for a quadriceps injury?
      • What is the prognosis of a quadriceps injury?
      • What are complications of a quadriceps injury?
      • Is it possible to prevent a quadriceps injury?
    • Restless Leg Syndrome Restless leg syndrome (RLS or restless legs syndrome) is a common cause for painful legs that typically eases with motion, and...learn more »
    • Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease that causes chronic inflammation of the joints, the tissue around the joints,...learn more »
      In This Article
      Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) Article
      • Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) facts
      • What is rheumatoid arthritis (RA)?
      • Rheumatoid arthritis vs. osteoarthritis
      • What are rheumatoid arthritis causes and risk factors?
      • What are complications of rheumatoid arthritis?
      • What are rheumatoid arthritis symptoms and signs?
      • How do physicians diagnose rheumatoid arthritis?
      • What are the stages of rheumatoid arthritis?
      • What is the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis? What types of medications treat RA?
      • "First-line" rheumatoid arthritis medications
      • "Second-line" or "slow-acting" rheumatoid arthritis drugs (disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs or DMARDs)
      • What are newer rheumatoid arthritis treatments?
      • Rheumatoid arthritis diet, exercise, home remedies, and alternative medicine
      • What about rheumatoid arthritis and pregnancy?
      • What is the prognosis for patients with rheumatoid arthritis?
      • What are tips for living with rheumatoid arthritis?
      • Is it possible to prevent rheumatoid arthritis?
      • What specialists treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA)?
      • What new information about RA has come from the 2015 national meeting of the American College of Rheumatology?
      • What research is being done on rheumatoid arthritis?
      • Where can people get additional information on rheumatoid arthritis?
    • Sciatica Sciatica pain, caused by irritation of the sciatic nerve, typically radiates from the low back to behind the thigh to below the...learn more »
    • Shin Splints Shin splints result from inflammation from injury to the tendon and adjacent tissues in the front of the outer leg. Shin splints...learn more »
      In This Article
      Shin Splints Article
      • Shin splints facts
      • What are shin splints?
      • What are risk factors for shin splints?
      • What are shin splints symptoms?
      • What causes shin splints?
      • How are shin splints diagnosed?
      • What is the treatment for shin splints?
      • What is the multifaceted relative rest approach?
      • What is the prognosis (outlook) for shin splints?
      • Can shin splints be prevented?
    • Sprains and Strains An injury to a ligament is called a sprain, and an injury to muscle or tendon is called a strain. Sprains and strains may be...learn more »
      In This Article
      Sprains and Strains Article
      • Sprains and strains facts
      • What is the difference between a sprain and a strain?
      • What causes a sprain or strain?
      • Where do sprains and strains usually occur?
      • What are sprain symptoms and signs?
      • How are sprains and strains diagnosed?
      • What is the treatment for sprains and strains?
      • What is the recovery time for sprains and strains?
      • Is it possible to prevent sprains and strains?
      • What is the prognosis of sprains and strains?
      • Where can people find more information about sprains and strains?
    • Varicose Veins Varicose vein: A dilated (widened) tortuous (twisting) vein, usually involving a superficial vein in the leg, often associated...learn more »
      In This Article
      Varicose Veins Article
      • Varicose veins and spider veins facts
      • What are veins and what is their function?
      • What are varicose veins and spider veins?
      • Varicose vein and spider vein pictures
      • Who gets varicose and spider veins?
      • What causes varicose and spider veins?
      • What are varicose vein symptoms?
      • How are varicose veins evaluated (diagnosed)?
      • What treatments are available for varicose veins and spider veins?
      • How can compression stockings help with varicose veins?
      • What is sclerotherapy?
      • Pictures of sclerotherapy treatment
      • What are potential side effects and complications of sclerotherapy?
      • What surgical procedures are available to treat varicose veins?
      • Can laser be used to treat varicose and spider veins?
      • What type of doctors provide treatments for varicose and spider veins?
      • What are the side effects of these treatments?
      • How can varicose veins be prevented?
Other Causes of Leg Pain
  • Bacterial Infections
  • Electrolyte Imbalances
  • Fungal Infections
  • Legg-Calvé-Perthes Disease
  • Medications
  • Nerve Damage From Any Source
  • Rupture of Ligaments or Tendons
  • Slipped Capital Femoral Epiphysis
  • Synovitis
  • Tears in Cartilage
  • Trauma
  • Tumors
  • Ulcerations of the Skin
  • Viral Infections
Examples of Medications for Leg Pain
  • Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)


Symptoms & Signs A-Z List



Arthritis

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