Popular Culprits of Leg Pain to Watch Out For
Some patients describe leg pain as burning, throbbing, aching, searing, or numbness, such as when a person is standing in ice water. Leg pain can get in the way of everyday activities such as walking or sleeping and can even be accompanied by neurological symptoms such as weakness or feelings of pins and needles. It can come and go or remain chronic.
Causes of Leg Pain
Although leg pain might be due to a problem in the leg, it is often caused by problems in the lower back such as where the sciatic nerve begins. The pain travels down the sciatic nerve to the leg, which is a condition known as sciatica. Leg pain may also occur in the L3 or L4 level, which occurs when a nerve reaches the front of the leg after branching off from the spine. This is known as a medical condition called radiculopathy, or irritation of a lumbar nerve. These nerves travel through many areas of the feet and legs, making it a common cause of leg pain.
What Does Leg Pain Feel Like?
Everyone may experience leg pain differently. Burning pain feels like a searing pain that radiates from the buttocks or low back down the leg. It may be described as shooting, intermittent, or electric pain that feels like a sudden sharp jolt.
Numbness or tingling often feels like the leg has fallen asleep and then returns to normal. However, unlike when a limb normally falls asleep, low back pain or numbness can be chronic and may affect daily life.
Positional leg pain is characterized by a dramatic worsening of lower back or leg pain when the patient is walking, sitting, standing, or taking another position such as bending forward or twisting. Constant pain occurs as a consistent pain in the buttock area. It is often referred to as nerve pain instead of an aching or throbbing and can happen in both legs at the time.